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Mumbai, Jun 25: Law firm Crawford Bayley & Co has lodged a police complaint against the State Bank of India for causing grievous injury, after a huge slab from the roof crashed on a senior partner and his assistant, on June 10.

The incident has further soured the relationship between the two as there is a long-standing dispute about the eviction of the business premises belonging to SBI.

Since 1910, Crawford Bayley & Co is a tenant on the fourth floor of an SBI building at Horniman Circle. On June 10, when senior partner and noted advocate, Dadi Engineer (73), and his assistant advocate Faranaaz Karbhari (31) were in Engineer’s room in the office, a massive slab from the roof collapsed on them. Karbhari sustained severe head injuries, while Engineer sustained serious multiple fractures and head injuries.

Engineer, who is recuperating at the Parsee General Hospital, told MiD DAY, “As we were speaking, Faranaaz suddenly noticed the roof cracking and alerted me. But it crashed down so fast on us that I fell from my chair and heaps of concrete blocks pounded my body. I couldn’t move as I had multiple fractures on the chest and hip.”

Extremely upset with the mishap, the firm has now registered a complaint against the SBI, with the MRA Marg police for causing grievous injury, under Section 338 of the IPC.

They were warned

However, S V Rao, assistant general manager, administration, SBI, said, “We’ve repeatedly warned them that the place is unsafe and that people could be injured. For months we’ve reminded them to vacate the premises so that we renovate it properly, but they just did not bother.”

In April 2002, the SBI had initiated eviction proceedings against the firm under the public premises act. “We’ve served them eviction notices to vacate the premises as our bank also needs space for expansion.

However, this dispute is now sub-judice,” added Rao.

Suresh Talwar, special advisor, Crawford Bayley & Co, said, that SBI officials haven’t lent any help or support to the injured, and had even stopped the elevators that evening, when the bleeding men had to be rushed to the hospital. 


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