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Maha bridge collapse: Two drown, 20 missing; rescue operations underway

By Oneindia Staff Writer

Mumbai, Aug 3: At least two persons drowned and 20 others are missing as two buses swept away in swollen Savitri River after a British-era bridge collapsed on the Mumbai-Goa Highway near Mahad in Maharashtra's Raigad district late on Tuesday night.

"Two buses are missing and a few other vehicles are feared to have been swept away," Raigad District collector Sheetal Ugale said today.

Bridge collapsed on Mumbai-Goa highway

Traffic movement on Mumbai-Goa hit badly after the incident which was later diverted to another bridge.

Teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) which have been pressed into rescue operation facing difficulty due to heavy rains in the area.

"Darkness had hampered operations, which resumed this morning,"Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis said.

Any survivor or vehicle is yet to be found.

"The primary reason seems to be the high pressure caused due to flooding of river Savitri due to heavy rains in catchment of Mahabaleshwar," tweeted Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis soon after the incident.

Meanwhile, latest reports say that the Coast Guard has deployed a Chetak helicopter to carry out search for people who were swept away from the bridge. NDRF teams have also been deployed to carry out search and rescue operation at the site of accident.

Opposition demands judicial probe

The Opposition in Maharashtra Legislative Assembly has sought a judicial probe into the Mahad tragedy. Raising the issue in the State Assembly, former CM Prithviraj Chavan said a judicial probe should be conducted and action taken against those guilty of allowing the old bridge to remain open for traffic.

"The life of the bridge, built by the British, had ended after completion of 100 years. Despite this, an officer certified in May that the bridge was good for traffic. A case against 302 IPC should be filed against that officer," former Deputy CM Ajit Pawar said.

OneIndia News

(With inputs from PTI)

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