NEW DELHI (AP) — At least 32 people died (now 140) and several are feared injured after a cable bridge collapsed into a river in the western Indian state of Gujarat on Sunday evening, according to the Press Trust of India news agency.
Local media reports said hundreds plunged into the Machchu river when the bridge in the state’s Morbi district collapsed. It was not immediately clear how many people were on the bridge.
The accident comes just days after the 19th-century, colonial-era bridge was reopened to the public after renovation. Officials told PTI the bridge gave way as it could not handle the number of people on it.
“Due to the bridge collapse, several people fell into the river. A rescue operation is underway,” state minister Brijesh Merja said. “There are reports that several people have suffered injuries. They are being rushed to hospitals.”
Videos on social media showed people clinging onto the partly submerged bridge in distress while another showed people swimming to safety.
Rescue operations are underway, with three National Disaster Response Force Teams rushed to the site, local media reported.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in his home state of Gujarat on a visit, said he was “deeply saddened by the tragedy.” His office announced compensation to the families of the dead and urged for speedy rescue efforts.
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