At least 10 dead and dozens feared trapped as three-storey building collapses

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At least 10 people have been killed and dozens of families are feared trapped after a three-storey building came crashing down in India's largest city.

Residents were rushing to get out after they spotted cracks in the apartment block's walls in the early hours of this morning.

Officials said around 26 families were feared trapped after half the building collapsed in the industrial town of Bhiwandi, in the north eastern outskirts of Mumbai.

Pankaj Ashiya, the municipal commissioner, said: "Half of the building collapsed and nearly 25 to 26 families are feared trapped."

Resident Sharif Ansari, 35, told Reuters new agency: "We heard a noise and I noticed that there were cracks on the floor.

"I woke up my neighbours and my wife and we rushed everyone down."

He added that he had gone back up to alert more people and was on the first floor with some other residents when the building came down.

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He said: "We jumped from there and managed to escape but there are at least another 60 people trapped."

A major rescue operation is now underway as it remains unclear why the 54-apartment block collapsed.

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At least 11 injured people have been rescued with teams of police, city workers and members of the National Disaster Response Force trying to reach trapped people calling for help in the rubble.

They are also reportedly removing debris in the cramped lanes of the neighbourhood hampering efforts to find people.

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Torrential rain is often blamed for building collapses in India, with the number of incidents, often involving old or illegally built buildings, rising during the June-September monsoon.

Last month, more than a dozen people were killed when a building collapsed in the industrial town of Mahad, 100 miles south of Mumbai.

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