At least 18 people lost their lives after a part of an under-construction flyover collapsed in Varanasi city of Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday (May 15).
Here is everything you need to know about the Varanasi flyover collapse:
1. On Tuesday (May 15), two pillars of an under-construction flyover collapsed at Varanasi cantonment area.
2. As a result, a huge slab of concrete fell crushing four cars, an auto-rickshaw and a mini bus under it, according to an eyewitness.
3. The 2261 metres long flyover was being constructed by UP State Bridge Corporation with an estimated cost of Rs. 129 crore.
4. According to reports, 56% of the construction work was completed when this accident occurred.
5. The portion of the flyover that collapsed was built in February.
6. Most people who were trapped inside the debris were labourers who were working on the flyover.
7. At least five teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), along with Uttar Pradesh police personnel, were deployed to rescue survivors.
8. Eight cranes, along with another one with 200 tonne lifting capacity, were rushed in to lift the debris. Gas cutters were used to pull out trapped victims.
9. At least 18 people were killed and over 25 injured in the accident.
10. The police said three of the injured people were given treatment at Kabir Chaura Hospital, while the critically injured were rushed to Sir Sunderlal Hospital, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University (BHU).
11. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has set up a 3-member committee to probe the Varanasi flyover collapse and ordered to submit an inquiry report within 48 hours.
12. The CM also announced a compensation of Rs. 5 lakh for kin of those dead and Rs. 2 lakh for the seriously injured.
13. The state government has already ordered suspension of four senior officials in connection with the mishap. They are Chief Project Manager H.C. Tiwari, Project Manager KR Sudan, Assistant Engineer Rajendra Singh and Junior Engineer Lal Chand.
14. The suspension order was announced by Deputy Chief Minister and Public Works Department (PWD) minister Keshav Prasad Maurya late Tuesday night.
15. A First Information Report (FIR) has been lodged against them and UP State Bridge Corporation Limited at Varanasi’s Sigra Police Station under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 308 (attempt to commit culpable homicide).
16. Meanwhile, the 3-member probe team has found beams at many places on the flyover were placed without inter-locking, exposing negligence of the construction agency and contractors. Also, traffic was allowed to ply under the flyover while construction work was still on, raising questions on safety measures that were supposed to be undertaken.
17. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who represents the Varanasi constituency, tweeted: “Extremely saddened by the loss of lives due to the collapse of an under-construction flyover in Varanasi. I pray that the injured recover soon. Spoke to officials and asked them to ensure all possible support to those affected.”
“I spoke to UP CM Yogi Adityanath Ji regarding the situation due to the collapse of an under-construction flyover in Varanasi. The UP Government is monitoring the situation very closely and is working on the ground to assist the affected,” he posted.
Sreya is based in Kolkata. She is a Senior Editor of Big Wire.