The collapse of a partly constructed apartment building in the city of Chennai, southern India, has claimed the lives of 18 construction workers. So far, 23 people have been rescued from the ruins but a further 40 are thought to remain trapped beneath the rubble.Â
More than 70 people were working on the 11-storey structure when it fell down during a rainstorm on Saturday evening.Â
Two workers were rescued from the debris today, and four dead bodies were recovered. Those saved were identified as Meenammal from Andhra Pradesh and Govind from Odisha. They were taken to Sri Ramachandra Medical College. According to The Times of India, Meenammal told her rescuers that many of co-workers were still alive near the place where she was lying.
It appears construction company officials have not adhered to approved plans. The building appears to have serious structural defects– J Jayalalithaa, prime minister, Tamil Nadu
J Jayalalithaa, the prime minister of Tamil Nadu state, visited the site in the Chennai district ofÂ Moulivakkam on Sunday. She said the collapse was the result of structural defects, and that the contractor had violated building codes.
Six people, including construction company officials, have been arrested.
The Chennai tragedy is the latest in a series of collapses in the region. Earlier on Saturday, a four-storey building failed in Delhi, killing 10 people, including five children.
Another collapse of a partly built structure occurred in Goa, western India, in February; 17 were killed in that incident.
In April last year, an eight-story commercial building collapsed in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka, killing 1,129. Forty Indian construction workers were thought to have been kidnapped near Mosul in Iraq earlier this month.
Over 500 Indian migrant workers have died in the past two years while working in Qatar as it prepares for the 2022 World Cup.Â