Tour boat capsizes in southern India, 19 confirmed dead

 13 Nov 2017 - 11:42

Tour boat capsizes in southern India, 19 confirmed dead


NEW DELHI: Nineteen people died when an unlicensed tour boat capsized in the River Krishna in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh late Sunday, police said.

A criminal case has been launched against the operator amid reports that the overloaded boat was not equipped with life jackets.

The incident near Vijaywada, around 250 kilometers (155 miles) southeast of state capital Hyderabad, happened when the vessel hit a sand bank while negotiating a bend in the river, the Deccan Herald newspaper said.

Krishna District Magistrate B. Lakshmi Kantam told to the Asia News International news agency that 19 people were killed and efforts to find missing passengers were ongoing. Local fishermen successfully rescued 15.

There were 38 people aboard, local broadcaster ETV reported.

“A criminal case has been registered against the boat operator,” Police Commissioner Vijayawada Gautam Sawang told Anadolu Agency. “An inquiry has also been ordered by the government.”

Two 30-strong teams from the National Disaster Response Force were called in to search for survivors, as well as 45 members of the State Disaster Relief Force and the fire service.