At least 13 people were feared dead in Rajasthan’s Kota district on Wednesday morning when the boat they were travelling in capsized, police said.
Over 40 people from the Gothda Kala village in the district were crossing the Chambal river on the illegal boat to visit Kamleshwar Dham in Bundi district, Kota district collector Ujjawal Singh Rathore said. “About 20 of them swam to safety and 13 are feared dead; 11 bodies have been recovered so far,” he said.
The deceased have been identified as Dinesh (35), Madhusudan Dhakar (22), Lotanti (25), Golma (15), Siyaram (55), Jyoti (13), Prembai (45), Urmila (30), Mansharam (30), Umabai (28) and Radhika (8).
“Police have lodged an FIR under section 304A of the IPC against the boat owner,” Rathore said.
Locals present on the riverbank began the rescue operation before government help reached the spot, said Kota superintendent of police Sharad Chaudhary.
State Disaster Relief Force (SDRF) commandant Amrita Duhan said that a team of 42 personnel with three boats and diving equipment began the rescue operations.
Chief minister Ashok Gehlot expressed grief over the accident. “I express condolences for the aggrieved families of deceased,” he said in a tweet.
The state government has announced a compensation of Rs 1 lakh each to the next of kin of the deceased from the CM Relief Fund.
According to people present at the site of the incident, the boat also had some motorcycles on board. “There was panic and everyone moved to one side of the boat when a kid shouted that water was entering the boat. This led to imbalance,” said 62-year-old Ramprasad Dhakar.
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