A day after six people were killed and over 30 have suffered injuries after a foot over bridge near the busy CSMT railway station in Mumbai collapsed, Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis called for an initial investigation into the matter, demanding the municipal commissioner to "fix the primary responsibility" by Friday evening.
While he was reviewing the situation at the collapse site and the hospital where the injured have been admitted, Maharashtra CM spoke to the reporters and assured investigation into the incident and revisit of the audit report to hold the accountability in the foot over bridge collapse.
"I met the patients at the hospital. This is a very serious matter. Even after doing the structural audit, such an incident takes place when a bridge collapse, then it poses questions on the audit report. It should be investigated. I have asked the municipal commissioner to probe the matter and fix the primary responsibility of the incident. There's no chance that the defaulter should be spared in such a matter. If audit was done and even then the bridge collapse, then even the audit report is under question. It will be further probed. The people who conducted the audit and declared the bridge to be fit, then they have to be held responsible here. If they said the bridge to be fit, then it is wrong. The audit reports should be revisited," Devendra Fadnavis said while speaking to reporters.
Lashing out at the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in the state which has been in government for the past 30 years now, Congress MP Sanjay Nirupam posed a question asking if the audit report states that the bridge was fit then how did it collapse. He went onto put the responsibility on the BMC Commissioner over the incident adding that there is a need to maintain and thoroughly audit the many bridges in Mumbai.
"This is the sixth bridge that has fallen in the past two years in Mumbai. For how long the people of Mumbai will be a target of such incidents. Are the people at Centre or state not responsible. Are they not answerable or accountable? That is the bigger question. An audit of the bridge was done. As per the audit report, the bridge was in good condition, I have been told. Then how did it fall? Who audit it? In Mumbai under the governance of BJP-Shiv Sena alliance for the past 30 years, there's a budget of 35,000 crore. There are a lot of bridges in Mumbai and after the Elphinstone Road station incident, many of these bridges need immediate audit and modifications. The responsibility is of the BMC commissioner. If he cannot maintain a FOB, then he should not be in his position. Shiv Sena-BJP cannot maintain a FOB and they want to open a coastal road," said Sanjay Nirupam speaking to reporters.
Meanwhile, an FIR has been registered against the concerned officials belonging to the Central Railway and the BMC department under section 304 A (Causing death by negligence) of the Indian Penal Code at the Azad Maidan Police Station.
Maharashtra Chief Minister announced ex-gratia of Rs 5 Lakh each for the next of kin of those who were killed in the tragic incident and a compensation of Rs 50,000 to the injured.