A day after portions of an under-construction parking lot caved in at the Subhash Maidan near Red Fort, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), on Sunday, said “no one in particular appears to be responsible for the mishap”.
“Prima facie it appears to be natural wear and tear of the pipeline as the main cause of the accident. (Therefore) no one in particular appears to be responsible,” said Deep Mathur, MCD director (press and information).
He said there was no work going on near the spot for the past few days. Work had started in mid-March for the three-level underground parking lot with a capacity of 800 equivalent car spaces. A large portion of the parking lot, which is being constructed by the MCD caved in on Saturday, injuring a dozen people.
Incidentally, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) had slapped a notice on the MCD in view of the amendment in the Archaeological Act. A huge chunk of the parking lot falls within 300 metres of the Red Fort, an ASI protected monument.
As per the amendment, the National Monument Authority (NMA) will evaluate proposals for construction within 200-300 metres of a protected monument. However, the NMA is not yet formed.
“We had raised objections by way of a notice long back,” said an ASI spokesperson.
On Saturday, municipal commissioner KS Mehra had directed deputy commissioner (city zone) Krishan Kumar to probe the incident and submit a report to him.
According to the report, the cave-in occurred due to leakage/breakage of the main line passing through about seven metres away under the Esplanade Road, which led to the collapse of water tank.
A Delhi Jal Board (DJB) engineer visited the spot on Sunday.
However, DJB spokesperson said, "It is not yet confirmed if the mishap occurred due to leakage/ seepage or due to any other thing."