Contractor of Greater Noida building had no construction expertise
The police have filed an FIR against 24 people, including a contractor named Qasim, who constructed one of the two buildings in Greater Noida that collapsed on Tuesday night and killed nine innocent people.
Qasim is the contractor of the constructed building that housed at least one family. It is alleged that the building had a weak foundation and poor construction material was used.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) officials said that the building was constructed using large quantity of sand instead of mixing adequate quantity of cement to build a solid foundation, walls, columns and roof strong enough to bear the weight of the floors.
Qasim, along with four others, who were arrested by the police is considered as an expert in developing unauthorised buildings in Shahberi village.
The police have filed an FIR under sections 304, 288, 337, 338 and 427, etc. against 19 persons that include land owners, property agent and builders.
“This is not the only building which is built by Qasim. He has been working for many years in Shahberi as per the information gathered by talking to the people involved in the mishap,” said Avnish Kumar, circle officer, Greater Noida.
Qasim, who hails from Meerut, has been working as a contractor and property agent for the last five to six years and he has no expertise in construction at all, said police. He constructed a six-floor building in Khasra number 5 at Shahberi and named the residential tower as ‘Kasa Villa’.
The flat buyers who gathered at the collapsed buildings site were blaming Qasim for luring them into buying the flats.
“Qasim used to claim that he has got all the approvals from local government authority and used high quality material. Our biggest mistake was that we believed him. When we used to visit the building, locals told us that he has built many buildings in this area; so we never doubted Qasim’s claims on construction and land title,” said Vijay Kumar, a flat buyer.
According to the Greater Noida authority officials, Qasim did not dig a deep foundation for the building and did not use adequate iron, cement and other material to construct a strong foundation.
“The contractor made a foundation that could have sustained a pressure of two to three floors. Instead, the contractor built six floors. Due to water logging and seepage into the roots, the foundation crumbled leading to the collapse of two buildings,” said a Greater Noida authority official, requesting anonymity.