Gujarat: A sessions court in Gujarat sentnced the main accused, Oreva Group promoter Jaysukh Patel to jail. He was produced before Morbi Sessions court today at the end of his 7-day police remand and was sent to jail after the Police didn't seek any further remand.
Police filed 1,262 pages chargesheet earlier
Rajkot range inspector-general of police Ashok Yadav said a chargesheet of about 1,262 pages has been filed in the case. Nine others who have been named in the chargesheet had been arrested earlier.
Oreva Group, a popular Morbi-based clock, e-bike and home-appliances manufacturer, was given the contract by the Morbi municipality in March 2022 to repair, maintain, and operate the British-era bridge for 15 years and to collect revenue from its ticket sales.
Bridge opened on Oct 26
The suspension footbridge over the river Machhu, was thrown open for the people on October 26, the Gujarati New Year, after undergoing repairs for seven months, by Mr Patel and his family members allegedly without informing the Morbi municipality. The civic body’s chief officer Sandeepsinh Jhala had then told said the municipality came to know of the bridge’s opening from the media, though Patel had held a press conference ahead of the opening.
A government-appointed special investigation team had cited several lapses on part of the Oreva Group in repairs, maintenance, and operation of the footbridge. Reports by the forensic science laboratory revealed that rusty cables, broken anchor pins, and loose bolts were among the lapses that were not addressed while renovating the suspension bridge. Oreva Group did not hire any expert agency to assess the load-bearing capacity of the bridge before throwing it open to the public, it said.
CM issued show notice to Morbi municipality
The government led by Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel issued a show-cause notice to the Morbi municipality asking why it should not be dissolved for failing to discharge its duties that led to the bridge tragedy. This came in the wake of the Gujarat High Court observing that there was a “collusion” between the company and officials of the civic body.
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