UP Congress chief demands Maurya's resignation

| | Varanasi

Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Raj Babbar on Wednesday demanded the resignation of State PWD Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, holding him morally responsible for the flyover collapse here, in which 15 people lost their lives and several were injured.

He also alleged that the State Ministers were putting pressure on the district officials and the officials of the UP State Bridge Corporation for completing the construction of the flyover before the 2019 general elections.

Without taking the name of Maurya, who is also the deputy chief minister, Babbar said the Minister concerned with the UP Bridge Corporation should resign on moral grounds and added that suspending officials, engineers and staff would not absolve him of his responsibility. He alleged that three Vinayak temples were being demolished in the city for development works, adding that the flyover collapse was a fallout of the "curse" of the deity.

The actor-turned-politician also alluded to a remark by Prime Minister Narendra Modi when a flyover collapsed in Kolkata two years ago. Modi had then said, "This is not an act of god, this act is of fraud."

Babbar said he would not repeat the prime minister's words and would only say that the Varanasi incident was an act of "negligence", which occurred due to hurrying up the construction under pressure from BJP ministers and senior officials. The Congress leader also demanded a Rs 50-lakh

compensation each for the family of the deceased instead of Rs 5 lakh and a Rs 10-20 lakh compensation for the injured, depending on their injuries, instead of Rs 2 lakh.



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