Man behind billboard collapse in Mumbai held

Mumbai: Bhavesh Bhinde, a businessman whose company was responsible for installing the billboard that collapsed in Mumbai’s Ghatkopar, was arrested from Rajasthan’s Udaipur last night and was brought to Mumbai this morning where he will be presented in a court.

Bhinde, the owner of Ego Media Pvt Ltd, was arrested by the Mumbai Police Crime Branch after a massive manhunt.

The catastrophic incident occurred on Monday evening when a 120 feet by 120 feet billboard crashed onto a nearby petrol pump amid gusty winds and unseasonal rains, resulting in the deaths of 16 people and injuries to 75 others. Following the incident, Bhinde fled Mumbai in a car with his driver.

A total of eight teams from the Mumbai Police were dispatched to various locations to locate Bhinde who was finally tracked down in Udaipur Thursday evening, three days after the hoarding collapse.

According to the police, after going to Lonavala, Bhinde returned to Mumbai the next day. From there, he went to Thane, then to Ahmedabad, and after changing locations several times, he changed his name and hid in a hotel in Udaipur. Joint CP Crime Lakhmi Gautam, overseeing the investigation, dispatched a Mumbai Police Crime Branch team to Udaipur where they tracked him down and took him into custody.

The search and rescue operation at the collapse site concluded at 10 am on Thursday, as confirmed by an official from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF). The illegal billboard had been installed on land under the possession of the Government Railway Police (GRP).