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Navi Mumbai airport work: Close shave for family after boulder hits house during Ulwe hill blasting

Angry Varcha Owle villagers go to blasting site, stop work after incident

mumbai Updated: May 18, 2018 11:21 IST
G Mohiuddin Jeddy
G Mohiuddin Jeddy
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Ulwe hill,Navi Mumbai airport
The blasting left a hole in the wall. (HT Photo)

In yet another safety scare, a family had a lucky escape on Wednesday after a nearby house was damaged during the blasting of Ulwe hill for the Navi Mumbai airport project in Panvel. Earlier, the blasting had caused landslides, damaged houses and injured a few people.

This time, a boulder flew into a house and made a gaping hole in it at 1.15pm, said residents of Varcha Owle village near Ulwe hill. Villagers and the contractor have filed cross police complaints.

Vilas Gharat, 60, whose house was hit, said, “We have two adjacent houses. After the blasting, a huge stone fell on the roof and went through the wall. My mother, who was sleeping near the wall, and children, who were having lunch in the other room, had narrowly survived.”

“I was resting after lunch. It was very scary. Do they want to kill us? Can’t we even sleep in peace? Will they compensate for our deaths?” questioned Gharat’s mother Ambubai, 80.

She added, “We are ready to move from our villages but not until all our rehabilitation demands are met. The blasting work should stop till then.”

Angry villagers reached the blasting site and stopped the work. The women and staff of the contractor reportedly came to blows. The villagers later went to Panvel city police station, demanding the work be stopped. They were initially stopped from entering the police station. Later, a complaint was filed by the villagers against the contractor, who also lodged a cross complain.

Vinod Chavan, senior inspector of Panvel city police station, said, “We have registered two non-cognisable offences. An engineer said he was assaulted by some women.”

The police have provided a security cover to the site.

First Published: May 18, 2018 11:21 IST