RAJKOT: A Morbi court Tuesday rejected Oreva Group managing director Jaysukh Patel‘s plea for interim bail on the ground that he needed to get out to arrange funds for payment of compensation to the families of the 135 people killed in the October 30 collapse of the town’s British-era suspension footbridge.
Patel, who surrendered on January 31, has been in jail along with nine co-accused in the case. Oreva had been contracted to renovate, maintain and operate the rickety bridge over the Machchhu river.
The Gujarat high court has directed the company to pay Rs 10 lakh each as interim compensation to the kin of the deceased and Rs 2 lakh to each of the injured within four weeks. The court rejected the company’s offer of interim compensation totalling Rs 5 crore, to be distributed among the families of the dead and the injured.
Principal district and sessions judge P C Joshi rejected Patel’s bail application on the basis of the prosecution’s argument that the company would have been ready with the required funds when it came out with a compensation offer.
N R Jadeja, an advocate representing the victims’ families, said, “The court considered three aspects while rejecting the bail application. First, no bank statement in support of the bail application was presented in court.”





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