10 shops damaged as tree branch falls at Assonora market

Ten shops were damaged after a branch of a huge peepal tree came down crashing in the Assonora market in the early hours of Thursday.

Three shops were totally damaged while seven were partially damaged. The incident took place at 2.30am when a branch of the old tree fell on the shops including grocery, vegetable and tea stalls.

No one was hurt. The loss was estimated at over 10 lakh. Two electricity poles were damaged in the incident, which also created a traffic jam in the market. Fire services from Mapusa and Bicholim were pressed into service to clear the debris. "It is a very unfortunate incident. The loss could be over 10 lakh," said Assonora sarpanch Sapna Mapari.

"Nothing has been left, everything has been damaged, and the loss will be around 5 lakh said Madhu Mapari, an affected shop owner.

Pradip Halarnkar and Vishwantah Vaigankar were among others affected.

"The tree is supposed to be sacred. It will be decided whether to cut it down only after the advice of the religious heads," said sarpanch Mapari. [TOI]