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'Chief Engineer showed negligence by not supervising the Himalaya bridge'

Wednesday, May 08, 2019
By Zuber Ansari

After arresting the retired chief engineer of the bridges department of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Shitalaprada Kori on Monday night in connection with the fatal Himalaya bridge collapse, the Azad Maidan police probing the matter has alleged that Kori showed negligence by not visiting the spot and not supervising it properly. The police have made the fourth arrest after the BMC assistant engineer SF Kakulte, executive engineer Anil Patil and private auditor Neeraj Kumar Desai were arrested.Police source from Azad Maidan police station told that Kori being the chief engineer was entrusted to look after the repairs, maintenance, audits and other works of project which comes under his purview. “We can see a clear case of negligence as Kori did not visited the Himalaya bridge for inspection which was primarily his responsibility and neither he checked with his associates about the progress of repair works of the said spot. In the BMC, after a senior officer visits a spot which he should, an entry is made into the record about the visit but in this case, no records have been found during investigation. The incident could be prevented if Kori had acted to his responsibilities,” said the source. Kori was also supposed to supervise the work and take reports from the co-accused Kakulte and Patil but he did not do it, said the police.While seeking jail custody for the former chief engineer, advocate Ashwin Thool told the court that Kori retired from his job in June 2018 and the incident happened in March 2019 so there is no direct involvement of him which could prove his negligence. The Esplanade court on Tuesday sent Kori to police custody till Friday. The foot over-bridge, which connects Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus to BT Lane had claimed seven lives and left many injured.

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