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26 May 2020, 19:35 HRS IST
  • PTI
  • CSMT bridge collapse: Two civic engineers file bail pleas

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0:10 HRS IST

Mumbai, Apr 16 (PTI)
Two BMC engineers, arrested in connection with last month's foot-over bridge (FOB) collapse here, have moved separate bail pleas before a Mumbai sessions court, claiming the case against them is "false and concocted".

The engineers, Anil Patil and S F Kakulte, were working with the bridges department of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

The duo was arrested days after the 40-year-old bridge, connecting the area near the Times of India building with the CSMT railway station in south Mumbai, collapsed on March 14, killing seven people.

Earlier, their bail pleas had been rejected by the Metropolitan Magistrate court.

In their fresh applications moved before additional sessions judge M S Azmi Monday, the accused claimed they have been "falsely implicated" in the case and have nothing to do with the said offence.

The allegation against them is "false and concocted" and there is nothing on record to involve them in the crime directly or indirectly, they said.

The accused claimed that even admitting that they had not done their job properly, in the worst case scenario it can merely be dereliction of duty and not the IPC sections applied in the case.

They have been booked for culpable homicide not amounting to murder and other relevant provisions of the IPC.

Culpable homicide not amounting to murder invites maximum punishment of life imprisonment.

In its reply filed before the court Tuesday, the police said the accused were not present on the spot during the structural audit of the bridge even for a single day.

It is mandatory to carry out the inspection of such bridges before and after the monsoon, but the accused never did so, the police said.

Their bail applications will come up for hearing Thursday, public prosecutor Mangesh Arote said.

Besides the duo, police have also arrested structural auditor Neeraj Kumar Desai in connection with the incident.

Desai, who worked with a private firm, had allegedly given clearance for continued use of the ill-fated bridge after a structural audit.

A preliminary report into the collapse submitted by the BMC had said the structural audit of the FOB was not carried out properly.

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