BMC, Railways to Jointly Audit Bridges Passing over Rail Tracks

Indian Railways and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will jointly audit all structures passing over railway tracks from July 6, as per news reports. The decision comes a few days after a bridge collapsed in the Mumbai suburb of Andheri, injuring five people. The two institutions will reportedly form teams and a coordination committee, which will hold a joint meeting once a month to remove overlapping issues.

“For better coordination, such joint meetings will be held every month on a particular day in which joint decisions will be taken by senior engineers from BMC and railways,” Central Railway (CR) Chief PRO Sunil Udasi told the paper.The teams will audit all the 445 bridges passing over railway tracks within four months. In case of those requiring immediate action, work on repairs or maintenance of it would be started,” Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta was quoted as saying. During the audit, the assessment of the oldest bridges such as Lokmanya Tilak Bridge and Elphinstone Bridge will be given priority, along with their repair, without procedural delays.

The funds for repairing the overbridges will be provided by the BMC. Railways, however, is looking at the possibility of streamlining the money supply by forming a corpus fund for urgent requirements, according to Western Railway Chief PRO Ravinder Bhakar. “To ensure that there is no scope for delay in carrying out repair works, it was suggested that the possibility of creating a corpus fund of appropriate amount may be explored,” Bhakar told the paper, adding that this would ensure that there are always sufficient funds to carry out urgent repair work without delay. Railways has also requested the municipal corporation to prevent encroachment over pedestrian pathways on bridges as it contributes to the corrosion of the structure.

Western Railway (WR) has started probing the collapse of the pedestrian portion of the Gokhale road over-bridge in Andheri on Thursday. The steel remains of the collapsed bridge were reportedly brought to Mumbai Central for inspection.

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