MUMBAI - A five-storey residential block collapsed in Mumbai at daybreak on Friday, killing at least five people and leaving dozens feared trapped inside, in the latest building disaster to hit India's financial capital.
Rescue workers scrambled to find survivors amid the debris of the flattened block, owned by the city's civic administrative body, the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai, in the east of the city.
"My heart is thumping with fear. I'm just hoping," said tearful housewife Shanta Makwana, whose daughter and grandchildren were trapped inside the building in which she also used to live.
Several diggers were pressed into action to lift some of the larger slabs of concrete, allowing teams of rescuers to begin the task of taking out bodies and searching for those still alive.
One woman was removed covered in dark red patterned cloth and carried to a waiting ambulance on a stretcher. Crowds of women waiting nearby could be heard sobbing.
A crushed teddy bear and a dismantled gas stove were among the items poking out from the rubble.
"Figures show five deaths and 27 injured up to 2pm," Vijay Khabale-Patil, the corporation's spokesman, told AFP. The injured have been taken to nearby hospitals.
Local politician Bhai Jagtap said that 22 families lived in the destroyed block.
"The rest of the people are down below, calling people from inside. Rescuers are doing their level best to save lives," he said after visiting the scene.