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Death toll in Indian building collapse rises to 60 as cleanup winds down

India’s National Disaster Response Force personnel stand around a man, left, they rescued from beneath the debris of a building that collapsed on the outskirts of Chennai, India, on July 1, 2014.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

The death toll in a building collapse in southern India has risen to 60, as hundreds of workers came close to clearing the massive ruins of the 11-storey structure, police said Thursday.

Police Inspector-General Sandeep Rai Rathore said 27 people had been rescued since the weekend – the last one on Tuesday – from under the enormous heap of broken concrete slabs, twisted iron girders and concrete dust in one of the worst building collapses in India in decades.

The excavation was likely to be completed on Friday, he said.

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Police have arrested six construction company officials for alleged criminal negligence and violation of building codes. Authorities are investigating the cause of Saturday's collapse in Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu state.

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