Kolkata, April 1: At least 25 people were killed after a massive girder of an under-construction flyover in North Kolkata collapsed at a busy juncture on Thursday (March 31). The Army rushed in to carry out the rescue operation after the authorities failed to respond promptly. [Army resumes rescue op after temporary suspension]
This is a major tragedy that Kolkata/West Bengal has seen in the last few years.
Here are some of them:
April 2008: Bus falls in Bagjola canal in East Kolkata, at least 20 dead
In power: Left Front
The driver of a private bus lost control of the vehicle while trying to race past another bus and it plunged into the roadside Bagjola Canal, killing at least 20 people, including women and children. There were around 50 passengers in the bus at the time of the accident. Absence of an emergency exit in the vehicle resulted in more deaths. The city's ramshackle public transport vehicles came under notice for the first time after this incident.
March 2010: Fire at old building in Park Street, at least 24 dead
In power: Left Front
A massive fire broke out at the Stephen Court in Park Street area, killing at least 24 and injuring many. The police and fire brigade found it difficult to carry out the rescue operation since they did not have the building plan. The fifth and sixth floors of the 50-year-old building were constructed illegally, said the police later. At least five people had jumped to their death from the multi-storeyed building as the fire spread. Fire safety standards were clearly flouted.
December 2011: Fire at AAMRI Hospital in Dhakura, 89 killed
In power: Trinamool Congress-led alliance
Eighty-nine people, including 85 patients, died after the renowned AAMRI Hospital in South Kolkata's Dhakuria area caught fire around 3 am. Most of the patients died because of asphyxiation. It was alleged that doctors and staff members left the abandoned patients, many of who were immobile. Board members, including two industrialists, reportedly owners of the hospital, later surrendered before the police.
March 2013: A portion of a flyover in Ultadanga in East Kolkata collapsed, no casualties
In power: Trinamool Congress
A large chunk of a newly inaugurated flyover in Ultadanga in East Kolkata fell down. No life was lost since it happened around 4.30 am. A few young men raised an alarm to avert a bigger disaster. The ruling party blamed the previous Left government for the accident.