Bridge collapse in Bihar sparks outrage and demands for accountability

An under-construction bridge over the Ganga River in Bihar’s Bhagalpur district collapsed for the second time in a year, raising concerns about the state’s infrastructure quality and sparking outrage among citizens. The shocking incident was captured on video by locals and quickly spread across social media platforms, drawing attention to the recurring problem of bridge failures in the region.
Fortunately, there have been no reported casualties from the collapse, but it has once again exposed the vulnerabilities and lapses in the construction and maintenance of vital infrastructure projects. The bridge, which was meant to be a four-lane structure connecting Sultanganj and Khagaria districts, had already been inaugurated in 2014 by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Its subsequent collapse has raised questions about the quality of materials used and the competence of the construction team.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has taken swift action by ordering a comprehensive inquiry into the incident. He emphasised the need to identify and hold accountable the officials responsible for the bridge’s collapse. The Chief Minister’s response aims to address growing public concerns about corruption and mismanagement within the Bihar government, which have been fueled by allegations made by opposition leaders.
State BJP president Samrat Choudhary condemned the incident, accusing the Nitish Kumar-led government of rampant corruption. He argued that such collapses were a consequence of the administration’s lack of oversight and integrity, further undermining public trust in the government’s ability to ensure the safety and reliability of infrastructure projects.
Leader of Opposition in Bihar, Vijay Kumar Sinha, echoed these sentiments, emphasising the need for immediate accountability and a thorough investigation into the incident. Sinha criticised the prevailing culture of seeking commissions and alleged that corruption had infiltrated the government, leading to administrative anarchy and a crumbling system.
The bridge collapse in Bhagalpur has reignited the debate on the state’s approach to infrastructure development and the need for stringent quality control measures. The incident follows a similar collapse last year, where a bridge in Begusarai district collapsed before its scheduled inauguration. Such occurrences highlight the urgent need for the Bihar government to prioritise the safety and stability of its infrastructure projects.
As the investigation into the latest bridge collapse unfolds, there are growing calls for transparency, accountability, and stringent measures to prevent similar incidents in the future. The focus is not only on identifying and punishing those responsible but also on implementing reforms to ensure that infrastructure projects are built to the highest standards and are subject to rigorous inspections and maintenance.
The collapse of the under-construction bridge in Bhagalpur serves as a stark reminder of the challenges that lie ahead for Bihar’s infrastructure development. It has sparked a renewed sense of urgency to address the systemic issues that have plagued the state’s construction sector, with hopes that swift action will lead to safer and more reliable infrastructure in the future.

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