A 32-year-old woman and her two minor daughters drowned when their raft overturned in a swollen stream near the Khalwat-Nimgaon village in the district, police officials said here on Friday.
The incident occurred around 6 p.m. on Thursday when a group of farm labourers was returning home from the fields after completing the day’s work.
“En route they have to cross a small river flowing out of a nearby dam in a raft to reach their village Khalwat-Nimgaon on the opposite side. Owing to the stormy weather conditions yesterday, the raft suddenly overturned, leading to the tragedy,” Beed Police Control official B. S. More told IANS.
Of the five persons on the ill-fated raft, Sushma Phadtare, 32, her 8-year-old daughter Aiyarn, and another girl Pooja Kale, 10, drowned in the churning river water.
Three others on the raft, including 60-year old Ankita Naikwade, and 10-year-old Bharat Phadtare, were lucky and managed to swim to the safety of the shores.
“The bodies of the three victims have not been recovered yet and a search operation is still on to retrieve them,” More added.
According to the eyewitnesses, the local seasonal river which flows out of a dam, is reportedly quite shallow and narrow, barely a few feet deep and 25-30 metres wide in most places.