A day after a pedestrian bridge crumbled across the river Machchu, dropping an undetermined number of weekend revellers who had gathered on it into the waters below, the death toll in Gujarat's Morbi district rose to 134 on Monday.
45 children were among the deceased. As more bodies were recovered by rescuers, the town's palpable grief gave way to growing concerns. These concerns included how a company better known for producing watches and clocks than civil engineering was awarded the contract to renovate the bridge and why the first batch of arrests appeared to include junior workers with no indication that the local administration was being looked into.
Earlier, police reported that nine people had been detained and a preliminary investigation report (FIR) had been issued, among other accusations, alleging negligence-related death. Two members of the Oreva group, which renovated the colonial-era bridge and inaugurated it on October 26, as well as a number of other people, including security professionals who were supposed to control the crowd, were among those detained.