Five people have died and several are feared drowned after a tourist boat turtle in the swollen Godavari river in East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh on Sunday afternoon.
According to reports, there were around 60 people on the boat including the crew members, and about 20 of them have been rescued so far. The boat run by the Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation.
The boat started off for the picturesque Papikondalu, a prime tourist destination, from Gandi Pochamma Temple near Devipatnam and it capsized near Kachhuluru, the sources said.
Chief minister Jagan Mohan Reddy has ordered an enquiry into the matter. He has announced a compensation of 10 lakh each for the families of deceased.
All boat services have also been suspended in the area.
When the accident occurred, the Godavari river was flowing with over 5.13 lakh cusecs of floodwater on Sunday afternoon.
“We are trying to ascertain the details,” East Godavari District Superintendent of Police Adnan Nayeem Asmi told PTI.
State Chief Secretary L V Subrahmanyam also spoke to East Godavari District Collector Muralidhar Reddy and asked for detailed inquiry into the matter.
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.