The 250 metre-long pedestrian suspension bridge over the Machchu River within the metropolis of Morbi, within the state of Gujarat, collapsed at 6:30pm on Sunday 30th October as crowds gathered for Chhath Puja, a Hindu ceremony.
In March this yr the Morbi municipality, which owns the bridge, awarded a 15-year restore and upkeep contract to the Ahmedabad-based Oreva Group.
The bridge was closed for repairs in March and was reopened on 26th October, the Gujarati New Yr.
Native authorities chief Sandeepsinh Zala instructed the Indian Categorical: “The bridge is a property of the Morbi municipality, however we had handed it over to Oreva Group a number of months in the past for upkeep and operations for a length of 15 years.
“Nevertheless, the non-public agency threw the bridge open to guests with out notifying us and due to this fact we couldn’t get a security audit of the bridge carried out,” he mentioned.
Questions have now been raised in regards to the choice to award the upkeep contract to Oreva Group. The Ahmedabad-based firm is a number one producer of sunshine bulbs, wall clocks and e-bikes however has no observe report in building or infrastructure upkeep.
Oreva was additionally answerable for amassing tolls from folks utilizing the bridge.
The NDTV information channel reported that on the time of the collapse as much as 500 folks have been on the bridge which had a capability of solely 125.
A spokesperson of the Oreva Group instructed the Indian Categorical: “Whereas we’re ready for extra info, prima facie, the bridge collapsed as too many individuals within the mid-section of the bridge have been attempting to sway it from one strategy to the opposite”.
The state authorities of Gujarat has appointed a five-member group of cops and civil servants to analyze the tragedy.
9 folks linked to the Oreva Group have been detained by Gujarat police, in keeping with the Instances of India.