At least 20 people died after a boat capsized in the Krishna river in Ibrahimpatnam near Andhra Pradesh’s Vijayawada on Sunday evening, ANI reported. Several injured have been admitted to the Andhra Hospital in Vijayawada.
Seven people are still missing, PTI quoted unidentified police officers as saying. State Home Minister N Chinnarajappa told The Indian Express that the vessel had capsized minutes before it was to reach the jetty in Vijayawada. Twenty people were rescued.
“We don’t know yet how many people were on the boat, but those who were rescued said there were 38 people,” Chinnarajappa said. “Some eight families of members of the Ongole Walking Club had hired the boat.”
The boat was travelling from Bhavani Island to Pavitra Sangham near Vijayawada when the mishap occurred. Andhra Pradesh Tourism Minister Bhuma Akhila Priya has ordered an inquiry into the incident.
Around 30 troopers of the National Disaster Response Force, a 45-member team of the State Disaster Rescue Force and 60 members of the Disaster Response and Fire Services Department are conducting rescue operations.
Chinnarajappa said none of the tourists were wearing life jackets on board, which he called a “total violation of the safety guidelines issued to all boat owners operating here”. He said it appeared that the boat’s crew had not paid heed to the tourists’ requests for jackets.
Naidu announced a Rs 5 lakh reward for the two fishermen, who had rescued 17 people.