After Bihar bridge collapse, allegations of scam flood social media

CM Nitish Kumar directed officials to take stern action in the case with a warning that nobody found guilty of negligence would be spared..

After Bihar bridge collapse, allegations of scam flood social media

Visuals from the Site (Photo: ANI)

The collapse of a 3.17 km-long under-construction Cable Bridge across River Ganga, has raised serious questions about safety standards and design in infrastructure projects.

A portion of 400 meters stretch of the four-lane Sultanganj (Bhagalpur district) Aguani ghat (Khagaria district) Under-construction Bridge collapsed like a pack of cards on Sunday evening. This was the second collapse of a portion of the same bridge within 14 months.

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had laid the foundation of this cable bridge in 2014. The total cost of this project is said to be to the tune of Rs 1,710 crore.


Minutes after the collapse, various social media sites were flooded with allegations of huge financial irregularities in the construction of the cable bridge. They started putting a big question mark on the design of this bridge.

CM Nitish Kumar categorically declared that nobody found guilty of negligence would be spared. He directed officials to take stern action against the culprit. “I am pained over the inordinate delay in the completion of the project; he said.

Ruling JDU MLA from Parbatta assembly seat Dr Sanjiv Kumar, while making serious allegations against the additional chief secretary (ACS) of the Road Construction Department (RCD) Pratyay Amrit, said he should be kept away from the probing team. Talking to the media today, Dr Kumar said he should own up responsibility for the bridge collapse being the head of the department.

 “I had shown him (read ACS RCD) photographs of the cracks on pillar number 10-11 of the bridge with a request to dismantle it during March-April. But nothing happened. I will request the CM to keep this officer away from any probe team,” he told media persons. He also asked the government to appoint a judge of the Patna High Court to probe the bridge collapse.

On March 13 2023, Dr Sanjiv had demanded a probe into the cracks in some pillars of the bridge in the Bihar assembly.

Former IPS officer Amitabh K Das ( 1994 batch) has urged Bihar governor to recall all the files and documents related to this cable bridge in which he alleged a sum of Rs 1,000 crore has been siphoned off. In a letter to Governor Rajendra V Arlekar, Das urged him to personally visit the site. “I have come to know about financial irregularities in the project under the connivance of officials, politicians and contractors,” he said.

Talking to media persons, Deputy CM Tejshwi Prasad Yadav, admitted that the design of the bridge was faulty. In fact, IIT Roorkee was assigned to investigate and to review the entire design of the bridge, he said. “During the last review meeting, we had already decided to dismantle all segments of the bridge and to construct it anew. The entire cost would be paid by the concerned agency,” he said.

The ACS of the RCD Pratyay Amrit said the designer is likely to return here tomorrow. A fresh structural audit and testing of entire segment would be done. A fresh tender would be floated, he said.

Though there was no official casualty reported in the incident, a guard of the Singhla construction Ltd., Vibhas Kumar, posted at the under-construction bridge is missing since Sunday evening. The state Disaster Response Force team is still searching for him.

Meanwhile, a team of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday raided 24 residential premises/offices of JDU MLC Radha Charan Seth in Bihar, West Bengal and Odisha. On Sunday morning, the team also raided his official residence at Beer Chand Patel Marg in Patna. According to official sources, huge incriminating evidence of financial irregularities was found from his premises.

The ED team also raided the residence of former RJD RS MP Subhash Yadav in a DA case. Details are awaited.