A five-story building under construction collapsed in the southern Indian state of Goa, killing at least 14 workers and leaving dozens more feared trapped under the rubble, police said.

Authorities were trying to determine how many people were at the construction site when the building collapsed Saturday afternoon in Canacona, about 70 kilometres from the state capital of Panaji, police Superintendent Shekhar Prabhudessai said.

Witnesses said about 40 workers were at the site.

Prabhudessai said the cause of the collapse had not been determined.

Soldiers and firefighters listened for movement or cries from the wreckage as they worked overnight to clear the debris, state official Venancio Furtado said.

At least 10 people were pulled out alive overnight, but the chance of finding survivors was dwindling, Furtado said.

Building collapses common in India

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar pledged to crack down on those responsible. Police began investigating both the building company and city officials who approved the building's construction on a patch of marshland in Canacona.

Police said they have so far been unable to track down the construction company managers.

Many of the workers had come from other, poorer states including Jharkhand, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh in search of jobs in India's thriving construction business. One worker who was not at the scene when the building collapsed said he earned about 300 rupees ($4.80) for a day's work, according to Press Trust of India.

"It was like an earthquake when the building fell," witness Ramesh Naik said. "You could not see what exactly had happened because of the dust."

Building collapses are common in India, as massive demand for housing and lax regulations often encourage builders to cut corners by using substandard materials or add unauthorized extra floors.