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India Razes Skyscrapers in Biggest Ever Demolition

India on Sunday carried out its “biggest” ever demolition, bringing down two skyscrapers in a residential area on the outskirts of the capital New Delhi, local media and officials said.

The two 30-story skyscrapers were demolished following the Supreme Court’s direction last year as the towers had violated construction rules.

On Saturday, Indian authorities evacuated thousands of people from the buildings known as Apex and Ceyane, located in a densely-populated neighborhood in the city of Noida.

Officials said over 3,700 kilograms (8157 pounds) of explosives were used in the exercise and people living in the vicinity were told to leave their homes and return after the demolition is successfully done.

Alok Singh, a top police official in Noida, told reporters that the demolition was carried out as per the plan.

Mayur Mehta, a senior official from Edifice Engineering, the agency involved in the demolition, told Anadolu Agency that over 3,700 kilograms of explosives were installed to demolish the twin towers.

“We evacuated over 1,000 families and 250 meters (820 feet) area around the towers was also seized before the demolition,” he said.

It was the “largest ever” demolition carried out in the country, he added.

Around 2:30 p.m. local time (0900GMT), television footage showed the buildings kissing the ground in a couple of seconds and creating a dust cloud in the area. An estimated 30,000 tons of debris is expected to gather at the bottom, which would take several weeks to clear by the authorities.

While the construction of illegal buildings in India is rampant, the demolition of buildings is rare in India.

In 2020, two lakeside apartment complexes were razed to the ground in southern India as they were also found to be built in violation of environmental rules.

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