Indian Police arrest 9 after Morbi Bridge collapse
INDIA: Police in the Indian state of Gujarat have arrested nine people in connection with the collapse of a pedestrian bridge that killed at least 141 people.
Four of those detained are employees of a firm contracted to maintain the bridge in the town of Morbi.
Hundreds were on the structure when it gave way, sending people screaming for help into the river below in the dark.
Hopes of finding more survivors are fading. Many children, women and elderly people are among the dead.
The 140-year-old suspension bridge – a major local tourist attraction – had been reopened only last week after being repaired.
Police investigating Sunday evening’s disaster say the nine people arrested are all associated with Oreva group, the firm contracted to maintain and operate the bridge.
They are being investigated for culpable homicide not amounting to murder, senior police officer Ashok Kumar Yadav said.
“Of these nine, two work as managers, while two work as ticket booking clerks [all employed by Oreva] at the bridge site,” he told a news conference.
The other five accused include two people contracted to repair the structure, as well as security personnel at the bridge. There was no immediate response from Oreva to news of the arrests.
Earlier, a company spokesman told the Indian Express newspaper: “While we are waiting for more information, prima facie, the bridge collapsed as too many people in the mid-section… were trying to sway it from one way to the other.” – BBC