Bihar bridge collapse: Company faces blacklist threat, engineer suspended

Bihar govt issues show cause notice to company

Bihar bridge tragedy A view of an under-construction bridge that collapsed on Sunday, in Bhagalpur | PTI

Taking a grim view of the bridge collapse incident two days ago, the Bihar government has slapped a show cause notice on the construction company concerned, a top official said on Tuesday.

Pratyay Amrit, the Additional Chief Secretary for the road construction department, also said that the executive engineer concerned has been suspended.

"The Haryana-based company, which was awarded the contract, has been served with a show cause notice by the Managing Director of Bihar Rajya Pul Nirman Nigam and asked to reply within 15 days", Amrit told PTI.

The company has been asked to explain why it should not be blacklisted by the government and further action taken against it, he said.

"The department has also suspended the executive engineer concerned for his failure to keep an eye on the quality of the work", added the Additional Chief Secretary.

Constructed over the river Ganges, the bridge was supposed to link Bhagalpur and Khagaria districts.

The under-construction bridge, a portion of which caved in on Sunday, involved a cost of over Rs 1,700 crore and was supposed to be completed by 2019. The foundation stone of the structure was laid in February 2014, by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

Deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav had earlier indicated that portions of the bridge had been demolished earlier in a planned fashion and the final collapse indicated that fears about the structural stability of the bridge were correct.

The incident took place a year after another portion had collapsed during a thunderstorm.

The chief minister had, on Monday, voiced strong displeasure over the poor quality of the work and the inordinate delay in completion.

The BJP, which had been in power in the state till about a year ago, has been pinning the blame on corruption and demanding the chief minister's resignation.


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