Wall collapse kills 24 at Indian wedding

JAIPUR, India  (AFP) – A wall collapsed during a wedding party in western India, killing 24 people including four children, police said on Thursday (May 11).

Guests had taken shelter from a storm under a tin shack that adjoined the wall when it collapsed late on Wednesday, local police officer Anil Tank told AFP.

“The wall and a tin shed attached to it at the marriage venue collapsed due to a storm,” said Tank, superintendent of police in Bharatpur, the district of Rajasthan state where the disaster occurred.

He said another 26 were injured, 15 of them seriously.

The Press Trust of India news agency said there were food stalls set up along the wall for the wedding.

Rajasthan is one of India’s most arid states, but suffers frequent dust storms during the hotter months.

A heatwave has swept across many parts of India in recent weeks, with temperatures reaching 44 deg C in the capital Delhi.

Building collapses are common in India, especially during the annual monsoon season.

A massive influx of people to cities in search of jobs and a shortage of cheap housing have fuelled the construction of illegal buildings across the country, often with sub-standard material.

Millions also live in dilapidated old buildings that often cave in during heavy rains.