Owner of collapsed Mumbai hoarding arrested in Udaipur

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Mumbai Police Crime Branch personnel with Bhavesh Bhinde (in black) after his arrest in Udaipur on May 16.
| Photo Credit: PTI

Bhavesh Bhinde, the owner of the advertising agency Ego Media and the man responsible for erecting the illegal hoarding at Mumbai’s Ghatkopar which collapsed during the dust storm earlier this week killing 16 and injuring 75, was arrested on May 16 evening from Udaipur.

The Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime), Mumbai Police, Lakhmi Gautam said, “The accused will be brought to Mumbai on May 17 morning for further legal proceedings.”

Mr. Bhinde was booked for culpable homicide not amounting to murder and other relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at the Pant Nagar police station after the hoarding collapsed on May 13

A police officer involved with the investigation of the case claimed that Mr. Bhinde had been on the run since May 13. A police team had visited his office in the eastern suburb of Mulund, but he was unavailable and his mobile phone was switched off.

Mr. Bhinde had contested the Assembly election as an independent candidate from Mulund in 2009. According to his affidavit, there are 23 cases registered against him under the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act and the Negotiable Instruments Act (for bounced cheques).

According to sources, the accused has signed several contracts with the Indian Railways and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for erecting hoardings and banners over the years.

The company and others are also accused of poisoning and cutting down trees.

On his arrest, former Member of Parliament and BJP leader Kirit Somaiya posted on X, “I am sure now names of the persons helping him will come out.”

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