Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh): Several people were feared drowned when a tourist boat capsised in the swollen Godavari river in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh Sunday afternoon. Officials put the death toll at five, but it may rise as many are missing. Ten 10 passengers have been have been rescued, police sources said. There were 63 travellers on the boat, sources said including 11 crew members.
The Godavari river has been in spate for the past few days and over 5.13 lakh cusecs of floodwater was flowing Sunday afternoon when the mishap occurred.
“We are trying to ascertain the details,” East Godavari DSP Adnan Nayeem Asmi told this agency.
The boat run by the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation had started off for the picturesque Papikondalu, a prime tourist destination, from Gandi Pochamma Temple near Devipatnam and it capsized near Kachhuluru, sources said.
State Chief Secretary LV Subrahmanyam spoke to East Godavari District Collector Muralidhar Reddy and enquired about the incident. The Chief Secretary directed that a helicopter be pressed into service to trace the boat mishap victims. Helicopters of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and teams of the National Disaster Response Force or NDRF have been called in to help with the rescue.
Police and other rescue teams have started off from East and West Godavari districts for the accident spot, but it could take some time for them to reach there because of the swollen state of the river, official sources said.
It should be stated here that in a similar sort of accident, 12 people had lost their lives after the boat they were travelling on capsized in the Godavari in May 2017