Bridge Collapses In Bihar

Bridge Collapses In Bihar

Probe ordered after Bihar’s Bhagalpur bridge collapse; second incident.

Video Of Bridge Collapsing In Bihar

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An under-construction bridge in Bhagalpur, Bihar, collapsed for the second time. The four-lane bridge, being built between Sultanganj in Bhagalpur and Aguwani in Khagaria district, had a construction cost of ₹1,716 crore. The State Government has initiated an investigation into the incident.

The bridge structure collapsed last year as a result of powerful wind and rain. Despite being initiated in 2014, the bridge construction has missed its deadline eight times. According to eyewitnesses, several men were working on the bridge when it began to collapse. No casualties have been reported thus far.

Originally planned to be completed in 2019, the Aguwani Ghat bridge construction in Khagaria was initiated by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on February 23, 2014, with the laying of the foundation stone. The work on the bridge was inaugurated by Mr. Kumar on March 9, 2015, and the construction began in 2016.

Deadline extension granted
Originally scheduled for completion by March 2019, only a mere 25% of the work had been properly executed by that time. Consequently, the State Government extended the deadline to March 2020, and subsequently to 2022. Rather than imposing penalties on the construction company for the delay, the government continued to provide additional time to finalize the project.

During heavy wind and rain on April 30, 2022, the superstructure of the bridge collapsed between pillar numbers 4 and 6. This incident sparked concerns regarding the quality of construction; however, no actions were taken against the company responsible. Instead, the company was granted an extension to complete the bridge project. The bridge holds significance as it serves as a vital link between north and south Bihar.

Following the bridge collapse, the Chief Minister promptly engaged with road construction department officials, urging them to conduct an investigation and ensure stringent measures are taken against those accountable. Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Prasad Yadav, responsible for the road construction department, later addressed the media, affirming that appropriate actions would be taken against those found responsible.

Unsurprisingly, the incident attracted swift criticism from the Bharatiya Janata Party, Nitish Kumar’s former coalition partner in the state.

BJP national spokesperson Shehzad Poonwalla described it as “the bridge of corruption” and took a dig at the chief minister.

“Aguwani-Sultanganj bridge in Bihar’s Bhagalpur – dream project of CM Nitish Kumar collapses. This is the second time the bridge has collapsed. Imagine the level of corruption ! ₹1750 crores of tax payer money takes Jal Samadhi with the bridge. THE BRIDGE OF CORRUPTION COLLAPSES EVEN AS NITISH BABU IS BUSY ATTEMPTING TO BE A BRIDGE OF OPPOSITION UNITY. Wait & see how Pappu Media ignores this story or somehow blames PM Modi for it,” Poonwalla tweeted.

Another BJP spokesperson Priti Gandhi said Nitish Kumar should concentrate on his own state “instead of poking his nose in issues not concerning him”.

“Aguwani-Sultanganj bridge in Bihar collapsed into the Ganga few hours ago. The bridge, being made at a cost ₹1710 crores, was to connect Khagaria & Bhagalpur districts,” she tweeted

BJP IT-cell head Amit Malviya asked if Nitish Kumar and deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav will resign for the incident.

“Today, the bridge being built on the river Ganga between Sultanganj and Khagaria of Bhagalpur in Bihar collapsed. In 2015, Nitish Kumar inaugurated this bridge, which was to be completed by 2020. This bridge has fallen for the second time. Will Nitish Kumar and Tejashwi Yadav resign immediately taking cognizance of this incident? By doing this, both the uncle and nephew can set an example in front of the country,” Malviya tweeted in Hindi.

In the meantime, Lalit Narayan Mandal, the JDU MLA from Sultanganj, expressed his disappointment, stating, “We had anticipated that the bridge would be inaugurated sometime around November-December this year. However, it is unfortunate to see it collapse. A thorough investigation must be conducted as there appears to be some fault.”

Officials are currently assessing the extent of the damage inflicted on the bridge. Dhananjay Kumar, the Bhagalpur SDO, reported, “We have been informed about the collapse of a pillar and segment. The incident occurred in Parvatta. We have engaged in discussions with the engineers involved in the bridge construction. At present, there have been no reports of casualties or property loss.”

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