The committee will also have members of the Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR).
MUMBAI: Union railway minister Piyush Goyal has ordered an enquiry by the commissioner of railway safety (CRS) into Tuesday’s partial collapse of the pedestrian pathway of Gokhale bridge, a road over bridge (RoB) in Andheri (east). The report findings will be out in 15 days. Mr Goyal has also ordered an audit of Mumbai’s 455 RoBs to be conducted in six months by a committee under an IIT director and professor. The committee will also have members of the Central Railway (CR) and Western Railway (WR).
Speaking to reporters at the site of the mishap in Andheri, Mr Goyal said, “This is a very unfortunate and unexpected incident. I have ordered an immediate enquiry by the CRS, which is an independent body, into the collapse. The report of the CRS will be submitted in 15 days. The CRS has already visited the site.”
He said that in the last audit of the bridge conducted on November 12, 2017, no major abnormality had been found, which is why it was decided that a third-party conduct the audit. He said that nearly 500 workers and railway officials were working on restoring WR services and that services on WR, CR and harbour line would be restored by night.
Mr Goyal said, “I saw the design of the bridge and studied the drawings. It was a 40-year-old cantilever bridge. Because of it being on cantilever, it collapsed. I have called IIT director and professor Devang Kakkar and requested him that a joint safety audit be conducted of all 445 Mumbai suburban bridges, including RoBs, FoBs, and bridges with infrastructure (including pipelines) crossing railway tracks in six months.” He said that the audit would be conducted under professor Kakkar’s leadership along with the railway and BMC. The minister said that motorman Chandrashekhar Sawant, who used his presence of mind and halted the train just in time to avert a major accident, would be awarded `5 lakh.