Railway Inquiry Committee waiting to record statements of two officials

Sushant Ranjan
Tuesday, 23 October 2018

A high-level committee of four members has been deputed to conduct an inquiry into the hoarding collapse incident, which took place near Juna Bazaar Chowk on October 5, killing four people and injuring many others. 

Pune: A high-level committee of four members has been deputed to conduct an inquiry into the hoarding collapse incident, which took place near Juna Bazaar Chowk on October 5, killing four people and injuring many others. 

The Central Railway had to submit the report within 15 days and it is yet to be submitted. The delay is due to non-availability of two railway officials, who are currently in judicial custody. The committee is waiting for these officers to be released on bail so that they can record their statements and complete the inquiry.

Chief Public Relations Officer (CPRO) Sunil Udasi said on Monday that the report is yet to be finalised and will be submitted after the two staffers are released on bail. “The committee is waiting to record their statements after both the officials are released on bail as they are currently in judicial custody. It is up to the court to decide when they will be granted bail.”

A high-level committee had questioned as many as 85 officials of both Commercial and Engineering Department regarding the mishap.

On October 5, a 40 feet tall hoarding collapsed, which was installed in the premises of the Railways, killed four people and injured several others. A day after the incident, the Central Railway had announced that a committee has been set up to investigate the accident and those are responsible will not be spared.

The arrested duo, Junior Engineer Sanjay Vishnudev Singh (42) and blacksmith Pandurang Nivrutti Vanare (57) have been booked under Sections 304 (2) (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) and 34 (common intentions). The Bund Garden police had arrested them on October 6, telling the court that their remand was needed to know the whereabouts of other accused, who are wanted in a case and to recover equipment that was used for dismantling the hoarding.

The duo has maintained, through their lawyers, that they are being made ‘scapegoats’ and the police had not questioned senior officials at Commercial Department of the Pune Division, who had issued the contracts to advertisers, as well as to private contractors for the dismantling of the metal structures. They maintained that they were not involved in any way in the process of dismantling of the hoardings and that they were not present at the site when the operation was going on.

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