Published on: November 7, 2022 at 21:00 IST
On Monday, the Gujarat High Court took suo motu cognisance of the collapse of the Morbi Bridge on October 30, 2022.
On October 30, the 141-year-old suspension bridge in Morbi, Gujarat, which spans over the Machchuu river, collapsed, killing about 135 people.
The bridge had recently undergone maintenance and repairs by a private company, the Oreva Group, before it collapsed.
A bench of Chief Justice Aravind Kumar and Justice Ashutosh J. Shastri stated that it was disheartening to see so many people die untimely in the incident.
“Mr Advocate General, it was disheartening. More than 100 persons have died an untimely death. So we have taken a suo motu cognizance of it. We want to know what steps have you (state) taken so far,” the Court stated.
The court ordered the State, the State Home Department, the State Human Rights Commission, the State, the State’s Chief Secretary, the Morbi Municipal Corporation and Urban Development Department (UDD) to be impleaded as parties.
The State was asked for a report on the actions taken thus far within ten days, and a further hearing was scheduled for November 14, 2022.
It was mandated that the State Human Rights Commission submit a separate report on the incident.
In order to register a Times of India article on the incident as a public interest lawsuit (PIL), CJ Aravind Kumar instructed the High Court Registrar over the phone on October 31, 2022.
However, due to the Diwali holiday, he was unable to sit in court that day to hear the case.
The State was represented by Senior Advocate Manisha Lavkumar Shah and Advocate General Kamal Trivedi.