About 30 people, most of them children, were feared drowned in the swift Kameng river at Seppa in East Kameng district of Arunchal Pradesh when an old wire rope suspension foot bridge over it collapsed on Saturday evening. Most of the children were in the age group 10 to 15 years.

Additional Deputy Commissioner Tage Tado told The Hindu that the tragedy occurred when the bridge across the river, connecting Seppa Market and new Seppa township, collapsed around 5 pm and people standing on it fell into the waters and drowned. He said about 30 people were feared killed in the tragedy.

Rescue mission hampered

Police said the rescue mission was hampered due to darkness. The actual number of deaths was yet to be ascertained as the fate of those who fell into the river could not be immediately known.

The accident occurred when a group of children, along with some elderly people, were capturing an insect, which is a delicacy of the local tribal people and called Tari in local dialect, with mosquito nets when the bridge collapsed due to excessive load.

This is the second incident of the collapse of a suspension bridge this month in Arunachal Pradesh.