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By A Newsman

Kalyani, 25 August: RECURRENCE of a girder damage that the state public works department (PWD) fixed earlier this year, has forced the administration to indefinitely stop heavy vehicles from plying on the arterial Ishwar Gupta Setu in Hooghly.

The 1.04 km long bridge runs over the Hooghly river connecting Bansberia (Hooghly) and Kalyani (Nadia).

According to PWD engineer Debabrata Sen, in-charge of the bride maintenance, heavy vehicles of eight and 10 wheels will not be allowed on the bridge until the damages are repaired for good. “For now, only small vehicles and buses can ply through the bridge.”

Stopping heavy vehicles on the bridge means robbing them of the shortest road link between Hooghly and Nadia district, and affecting the movement of goods vehicles from Birbhum / Burdwan to north Bengal.

The girder between pillar 2 and 3 of Ishwar Gupta Setu had developed a crack on 17 December last year making the corresponding viaduct sink by about 15 inches.

This made the administration to close down the bridge until 5 January this year when PWD carried out a temporary repair by placing a wooden flyover over the damaged viaduct and the bridge was reopened to light vehicles and pedestrians.

Subsequently, on 22 April, PWD undertook a through repair of the damage by closing down the bridge for 15 days. It was reopened to all types of vehicles from 6 May.

But this repair that the PWD carried out has now proved out to be ineffective as the same viaduct recently started sinking again. Sources suggest that the repair that was carried out in April-May was done in haste and thus the problem has resurfaced.