KOLKATA, India (Diya TV) — An Indian construction company faces charges of attempted murder, mischief and criminal conspiracy in connection with the collapse of an overpass in Kolkata that killed 24 people, said Nurul Absar, who heads the police station in the city where the charges were filed.
The victims were killed midday Thursday when a section of a bridge that was under construction crashed down onto the streets.
Police brought in 12 employees of the construction company, IVRCL, for questioning on Friday. At this time, it remains unclear how many of them, if any, will be formally arrested and charged, and on what counts. There was no immediate response from the company on Friday to the charges, however, an IVRCL company executive said the collapse was not entirely his company’s fault.
“It’s nothing but a God’s act,” K. Panduranga Rao of the Hyderabad-based company told reporters. “So far in 27 years, we have constructed several number of bridges … it never happened.”
This isn’t the first instance of a bridge collapsing in the country, or even underpasses that were under construction.
In 2006, a bridge fell on an express train traveling through Bhagalpur, killing 37 passengers. Three years later in 2009, another 30 workers were killed after scaffolding on a bridge being built in Kota crashed down. More recently, in March 2013, fully constructed overpass collapsed in eastern Kolkata, not far from Thursday’s incident. The collapse in 2013 sent a truck into a canal, however the people inside were rescued.
Jayaprakash Narayan, a doctor and Loksatta Party founder, took to Twitter to describe his haste over the incident, and Rao’s response to it.
— Jayaprakash Narayan (@JP_LOKSATTA) April 1, 2016