Odishatv Bureau

Bargarh: Already being suspended by the Rural Development department, Assistant Executive Engineer Kamalakanta Taria and Junior Engineer Manoranjan Mohapatra were arrested today in connection with the collapse of under-construction bridge near Bheden in Bargarh district that left five injured on Sunday.

Hours after the mishap, Rural Development Department placed Executive Engineer Amulya Mohapatra along with the assistant executive engineer and the junior engineer under suspension for dereliction of duty.

The bridge was being constructed under the Biju Setu Yojana (BSY) at an estimated cost of Rs 8.5 crore.

Expressing concern, MP Baijayant Panda, in a tweet, stressed on setting up of a task force to examine all under construction and recently constructed bridges and flyovers in the state.

Similarly, Minister Snehangini Chhuria, who hails from the same district, held officials of concerned department responsible and demanded stringent action against them.

Meanwhile, Rural Development department Chief Engineer Bharat Chandra Pradhan visited the site and collected samples of construction materials amid stiff protest by local residents.

“We have collected samples including cement concrete, iron rod and other materials which will be sent for examination to ascertain the quality of works. A complete report will be submitted to the department secretary by the evening,” Pradhan said.

The nine-span high-level bridge was almost complete as eight slabs had already been laid. The accident took place when work on the last span was underway. The bridge once completed will connect village Jamdol with Dhubenpali in Bheden block.

The fresh mishap occurred barely 15 days after the under-construction flyover collapsed in Bhubaneswar that left one dead and 12 injured.