The Gujarat High Court denying bail to Jaysukhbhai Bhalodia, the Managing Director of Oreva Group, in connection with the Morbi bridge collapse incident.
The Gujarat High Court has recently made a significant decision regarding the Morbi bridge collapse incident that claimed the lives of 135 people and left more than 100 injured. The Court has denied bail to Jaysukhbhai Bhalodia, the Managing Director of Oreva Group, who was overseeing the maintenance and operations of the century-old suspension bridge.
In its order, Single-judge Justice Divyesh Joshi highlighted that Bhalodia had prior knowledge of the poor condition of the bridge but still allowed it to be opened to the public. The Court emphasized that if Bhalodia had taken timely corrective measures, the tragic incident could have been avoided, thereby preventing the loss of innocent lives.
The Court’s decision was based on the fact that Bhalodia had corresponded with the Collector and the Morbi Nagarpalika chief, drawing attention to the bridge’s deteriorating state and the urgent need for repairs. Despite having sufficient knowledge about the bridge’s condition, Bhalodia gave permission for it to be open to the public, disregarding the potential risks involved.
Justice Joshi, in a 30-page judgment, underlined that the Court was focusing on the prima facie fact that Bhalodia was well aware of the bridge’s condition from the beginning. The Court also acknowledged that the victims of the incident have already taken legal action by seeking additional charges against Bhalodia and other individuals involved.
It is important to note that the High Court’s decision comes in the wake of its suo motu cognizance of the incident and its subsequent monitoring of the investigation. The Court has refrained from commenting on the merits and demerits of the case, as it primarily considered the prima facie fact of Bhalodia’s awareness of the bridge’s condition.
This ruling by the Gujarat High Court serves as a reminder of the importance of accountability and responsibility when it comes to public safety. While the legal process continues, this decision underscores the significance of taking proactive measures to ensure the maintenance and security of public infrastructure.
[Jaysukhbhai Bhalodia (Patel) vs State of Gujarat]