POST TIME: 14 March, 2019 09:12:38 PM / LAST MODIFIED: 15 March, 2019 09:49:23 AM
5 killed, 30 injured as footrbridge collapses in India
Independent Online Desk/Xinhua

5 killed, 30 injured as footrbridge collapses in India

At least five people were killed and more than 30 others injured Thursday evening after a footbridge collapsed in ​Mumbai, police said.

The footbridge collapsed outside the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) railway station in Mumbai, the capital city of Maharashtra.

"This evening at around 7:30 p.m. (local time) foot overbridge connecting CST platform 1 north end with B T Lane near Times of India building collapsed killing five people and injuring over 30 others," a police official said.

"The injuries were caused because portion of the slab collapsed and people walking over it fell down and some came underneath the debris."

According to officials the deceased include two women.

Authorities have rushed police, health teams and disaster response force personnel to the spot to carry out rescue work.

"Right now we are removing injured to hospital," the police official said 

Eyewitnesses said it were the locals who first came to rescue of the injured and helped them to board vehicles and ambulances to reach hospital.

The injured were being taken to two nearby hospitals.

The traffic on the road has been suspended and police have asked commuters to use alternate routes.

Heavy machinery like earthmovers have been brought to clear the debris from the road.

Reports said repairs were being carried out on the overbridge Thursday morning, but it was still being used.

"Pained to hear about the foot overbridge incident near Times of India building in Mumbai," Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis tweeted. "Spoke to BMC Commissioner and Mumbai Police officials and instructed to ensure speedy relief efforts in coordination with Railway Ministry officials."

Fadnavis has ordered a probe into the bridge collapse.

"Strict action would be taken against the guilty," Fadnavis said. "We would throughly investigate into the matter."

Meanwhile, a blame game has started between Mumbai's civic body -- Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and federal railway ministry over the responsibility of managing the overpass bridge.

The railway ministry has said the footbridge was under the control of Mumbai's civic body, while the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation - Shiv Sena lawmaker Anil Desai has denied the claim. 

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also expressed grief over the deaths in the bridge collapse.

"Deeply anguished by the loss of lives due to the foot overbridge accident in Mumbai. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. Wishing that the injured recover at the earliest. The Maharashtra Government is providing all possible assistance to those affected," Modi wrote on Twitter.

In 2017, at least 23 people were killed in a stampede when the Elphinstone Bridge collapsed in the city.