PUNE: Real estate developers from the city said closer supervision of construction projects and making architects and structural consultants more accountable was necessary.
A six-storey building, built just over a year ago, collapsed on Friday in Narhe on Katraj-Dehu Road bypass killing a man. Officials blamed poor quality construction and the illegal addition of an extra floor as reasons for the collapse.
Sachin Kulkarni, managing director of Vastushodh Projects, whose firm has several constructions in the city's fringe area, said the construction methods in the municipal limits and outside were the same, the difference lay in supervision and inspection.
"Projects outside the municipal limits are sanctioned by the department of town planning. This sanction is for the area one can construct under the rules of floor space index (FSI). That department does not inspect the quality or safety of construction," Kulkarni said.
A developer, who had visited the Narhe site, said on condition of anonymity, that the structure was built on a quarry. "The builder had filled it up with rubble which formed the foundation of the building," he added.
The builder concerned was earlier a grocer who simply bought the piece of land and became a builder; he had no experience of construction, the developer said.
Hemant Naiknavare, president of Credai Pune Metro, said the organization has its own code of safety and quality. Besides, there are refresher workshops for the staff of developers and builders. The impending Real Estate Regulation law will answer concerns about safety of structures and put in place a mechanism to fix the responsibility, he added.
Town planning authorities are under huge pressure as more construction is taking place in the fringe areas outside the limits of the two municipal corporations, he added. Naiknavare said that structural audit firms can be engaged to undertake a third-party inspection.
Credai Pune Metro vice-president Shrikant Paranjape said the authorities will have to undertake an exhaustive investigation into the cause of the collapse. The town planning department needed more qualified manpower to examine the safety aspects of a structure before granting a completion certificate. "The town planning department has too much work and it is important that the developers themselves and their architects and RCC consultants exercise utmost responsibility while constructing and when issuing certificates or undertakings," he said.