statesman news service
MALDA, 18 JUNE: The District administration today handed over cheques of compensation to the families of those who died after a boat capsized in the Ganga in Manikchak on 14 June. Families of 10 deceased passengers of the boat were altogether paid Rs 20 lakh by the district land and land reforms officer, Mr Sanjib Chaki, at the community hall in Manikchak.
Meanwhile, the District Magistrate (DM) Godala, Mr Kiran Kumar, today held a crucial meeting with the zilla parishad (ZP) officials, Additional District Magistrate (Land Reforms), Block Development Officers (BDOs) and the boating area owners on lease.
Mr Kumar said that it was resolved in the meeting that the government rules and regulations regarding the ferrying of boats on different rivers would be distinctly displayed at the ferry-ghats immediately. The dos and don’ts of running passenger boats would be clearly mentioned in the notice board. “The BDOs would pay surprise visits to those ghats every week to examine if the boats are plying in adherence to the government rules and regulations.
If any violation is found, FIRs would be lodged immediately against the concerned offenders,” Mr Kumar said.
He also said that the particulars of the boatmen, including their address, contact number, photograph would be collected and kept with the administration, for prompt action in case of emergency. The data of boats would also be preserved. The boat-owners would be directed to keep life-jackets compulsorily in the boats.
In addition, training programmes for the boatmen would be organised by the National disaster management and rescue experts, the Malda DM, Mr Kumar, said.
He said that the compensation of Rs 2 lakh was paid to families of 10 victims who died in the boat capsizal.
He informed that Rs 5,000 was paid to each of those families for cremation of the bodies. It may be mentioned that a passenger boat capsized on 14 June at Rustampur ghat of Manikchak. Two bodies were found soon after the accident. Eight more bodies were found the next day. 
The Tourism Minister Krishnendu Choudhury, Manikchak MLA and Social Welfare Minister Sabitri Mitra, DM Mr Kumar, DIG SK Pujari and Malda SP Kalyan Mukherjee were present during the rescue operation.