Kolkata: West Bengal government on Friday suspended two engineers of Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) who were involved in the construction of the flyover, which collapsed yesterday.
"The concerned chief engineer and the concerned executive engineer of KMDA have been placed under suspension pending completion of the probe," a statement from the state secretariat 'Nabanna' said.
It also ordered immediate inspection of the remaining portion of the flyover to ascertain its stability and safety. It is apprehended that one cantilever pier of No 40 had shifted due to which two spans covering three piers were affected leading to the collapse, it said.
All engineering departments of the state government have been instructed to take necessary action for structural diagnosis and testing to assess structural stability of flyovers constructed or under construction by IVRCL, the statement said.
KMDA had entered into a joint venture with Hyderabad-based IVRCL for constructing the 2.2-km-long Vivekananda Road flyover in north Kolkata. Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RNVL) has been assigned the task of removing the collapsed spans on Kali Krishna Tagore Road.
The statement said 62 families in neighbouring houses have been requested to vacate their premises temporarily to enable the safe removal of the collapsed span.
So far, 24 people are confirmed to have died in the tragedy. Three of them were women. Identity of three persons is yet to be established, according to government records.
The incident left another 67 persons injured, 16 of whom are under treatment while the rest have been discharged.
About a 60-metre-long stretch of the 2.2 km flyover under construction crashed down yesterday afternoon on a congested road intersection here.
Forensic experts visited the site and collected samples of materials used for the construction for examination.
A day after an official of IVRCL dubbed the flyover collapse as an "act of God", IVRCL's legal team head P Sita said, "It is an accident". She also did not rule out sabotage.
"An act of God was just an expression only to describe that it is under no one's control," she told reporters in Hyderabad.
Showing a photograph of the mishap site published in a newspaper, she said that it looked like a site of bomb blast. There were various aspects, which should be looked into. Sita also said, "100 per cent no issues with regard to quality. It is the same material, as was used to construct the 59 sections earlier with approval, with which the 60th section (which collapsed) was built, unfortunately it collapsed."
The West Bengal government has already ordered a high-level probe into the incident that triggered a blame game with the Opposition accusing the Mamata Banerjee government of callousness.
Trinamool Congress and the BJP were engaged in a slanging match after Union Minister M A Naqvi accused the state government of "criminal negligence" in relief work, which the TMC described as "cheap politics".
Naqvi, Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, said that the TMC government showed "criminal negligence" in ensuring relief work and engaging in a "competition on corruption" with the previous Left Front government which resulted in the flyover collapse.
TMC national spokesperson Derek O' Brien termed Naqvi's statements as "cheap politics" in the election season.
"Just saw a BJP Minister's statement. Reeks of cheap politics in election season. Army came at state's request. Army belongs to nation, not the BJP," Brien said.
Naqvi also reiterated the party's demand for a CBI probe into the collapse. Meanwhile, a senior police officer said, "The main road crossing near Ganesh Talkies would hopefully be cleared by tomorrow. But the rest like the iron piers, iron pillars, broken concrete parts will be cleared in a step-by-step process."
KMDA had entered into a joint venture with IVRCL for constructing the 2.2-km-long Vivekananda Road flyover in north Kolkata.
Rail Vikas Nigam Ltd (RNVL) has been assigned the task of removing the collapsed spans on Kali Krishna Tagore Road, the statement from state secretariat said.
The statement said 62 families in neighbouring houses have been requested to vacate their premises temporarily to enable the safe removal of the collapsed span....