Rajahmundry: Boat capsizes in Godavari riveri, six go missing

Rajahmundry: Six students were found missing after an overloaded country boat capsized in the Godavari river after ramming a concrete pillar at Pasuvullanka of I. Polavaram mandal in East Godavari on Saturday.

Following incessant rainfall and discharge of huge quantities of water from Sir Arthur Cotton barrage at Dowleswaram, the river was flowing swiftly. Nearly 35 persons, most of them students of local schools, arrived boarded the boat at Saladivaripalem of Mummidivaram mandal to reach island villages like Pasuvullanka and others.

The driver lost control of the boat which rammed a concrete pillar. Some people including students jumped onto the concrete foundation of the pillar. This resulted in the boat tilting to one side and capsizing, and the rest of the passengers fell into the river.

As they started screaming for help, local villagers and workers involved in the construction of the bridge rescued more than 20 persons while some managed to swim to safety.

Learning about the boat mishap, the East Godavari administration requisitioned four teams each of the National Disaster Relief Force and the SDRF, divers from Indian Navy in Visakhapatnam and personnel from Special Protection Force. The area where the boat mishap took place was illuminated and close watch is kept for survivors.

East Godavari superintendent of police Vishal Gunni said, “Based on preliminary inquiry, about five persons are missing. We are yet to get details of how many persons were travelling in the boat when it met with the mishap and the number of survivors. There is a chance that the missing persons might be traced in case they were either rescued or swam to safety. We will take up rescue operation in the first light on Sunday involving divers from Navy to rescue any survivors in the mishap.”

The country boat is learnt to be unlicenced and its maximum carrying capacity was 12. Overloading was one of the major reasons for the mishap. The boat driver learnt to be safe. Chief Minister N. Chandababu Naidu expressed concern and directed the authorities to take up rescue operation. YSR Congress chief Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy immediate rescue and relief operation.

Even as a series of boat mishaps are happening in Godavari river, lack of supervision in the operation of especially ferries and country boats is resulting in such mishaps. 

Let's block ads! (Why?)