Another tragedy in AP, again killer boat didn't have licence

RAJAHMUNDRY: The wobbly boat rammed into the underconstruction bridge in Vruddha Goutami branch of Godavari at Pasuvullanka village in East Godavari district on Saturday evening.

The bridge was being constructed to link two Lanka villages in Vrudha Goutami branch of Godavari. The tragedy site is five km from the sea mouth.

East Godavari collector said that one round of search operation was completed up to Yanam, but nobody was found. SDRF and NDRF teams have been pressed into service and they will begin search operations late on Saturday night or Sunday morning once the waters calm down.

The river is in spate after heavy rains in both Godavari districts over the last few days. Second Saturday is a general holiday for schools, but these schools were open this Saturday to compensate for holidays declared earlier in June by the AP education department due to heat wavelike conditions.

Incidentally, the boat did not have a valid licence from the AP Ports department.

“As per our data, the boat which capsized in the Godavari on Saturday is not registered with us,” K Sridharma Sastha, port officer, AP Ports, told TOI.


This incident comes within two months of a similar boat capsize that occurred in the Godavari further upstream near Devipatnam mandal in East Godavari district on May 15, in which at least 20 people were killed.
Incidentally, on the same day three years ago, July 14, 2015, 29 persons were killed and 60 injured in a stampede at the Godavari Pushkaralu in East Godavari.
Apart from the collector, East Godavari SP Vishal Gunni also reached the spot.AP deputy chief minister N Chinarajappa also visited the site of the mishap. Meanwhile, chief minister Chandrababu Naidu directed district officials to step up the rescue operations.
While 26 passengers were rescued, six people were missing. Most passengers were schoolchildren below 15 years of age and two of the rescued were hospitalised.

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