A day after a part of a foot overbridge collapsed near CST station in Mumbai killing six people and injuring 31, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Friday suspended two engineers and ordered a full-fledged departmental enquiry against them.
The BMC suspended Executive Engineer AR Patil, who supervised the structural audit work in 2017-18, and Assistant Engineer SF Kakulte, who supervised the repair work in 2013-14.
A preliminary report by the BMC on the matter stated that there is a prima facie reason to believe that the structural audit was conducted in an irresponsible and negligent manner. It added that the tragedy could have been avoided if the structural audit had been done diligently.
"There is a prima facie reason to believe that the structural audit has been conducted an irresponsible and negligent manner. This tragedy could have been avoided if the structural audit had been done diligently," read the statement.
It further said that in spite of commissioning the report of the bridge and spending public money on it, the true condition of the bridge was not brought out. The report asked that the structural report should be made public.
"It's apparent that structural audit report has failed to point out an impending failure. In spite of commissioning the report of bridge & spending public money on it, true condition of bridge was not brought out. The structural report should be made public," added the report.
Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta suspended the two engineers.
The directions were given by the civic chief following an inquiry conducted by the chief engineer (vigilance).
Mehta also ordered a departmental enquiry against the then chief engineer (bridges) S O Kori and the then deputy chief engineer R B Tare (both retired).
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announced compensation for those who were killed in the incident. He announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh each to the families of those who were killed in the incident and a compensation of Rs 50,000 each will be given to the injured.
The incident took place around 7.30 pm when a major portion of the bridge caved in. The bridge was officially known as "Himalaya" foot overbridge. It was constructed in 1980 and was almost 39 years old.
The bridge connected the bustling Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus railway station with the Azad Maidan Police Station.
The bridge which connected the area near the Times of India building with the iconic CSMT station was commonly known as 'Kasab bridge' after the 26/11 Mumbai attack terrorist passed through it during the terror attacks.
This is not the first incident in the financial hub of the country.