Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Mahanga, Jan 31:
The under construction ‘Biju Setu’ on Gobari River at Kanhupur village under Mahanga block of Odisha crashed down yesterday while construction was going on.
One of the labourers working on the bridge, identified as Ranjas Das (40), has been injured in the incident and has been hospitalized. As per reports, about 40 workers were working on the project when the middle portion of the bridge came crashing down at about 4:30 PM yesterday.
Construction work has been temporarily halted after the incident.
While a major accident was averted by sheer luck, the quality of construction in the Rs 4.18 crore project is being questioned by the locals.
Notably, this is the second instance of an under construction ‘Biju Setu’ bridge– being constructed by Rural Development Department of Odisha Government– crashing down in Mahanga block within a year.
Last year on April 1, a Biju Setu under construction on Suka River at Tribenishwar collapsed leading to protests by locals. The State Government had suspended Deputy Executive Engineer Madhusudan Swain and Assistant Engineer Debashsis Mohanty on August 7, 2015 following the protests.
While we spoke to Assistant Engineer Deepak Kumar Mohanty about the Kanhupur incident of yesterday, he claimed that the incident occurred because of a failed wielding in the top shuttering channel and assured that necessary shuttering and wielding would be carried out soon.