Death toll rises; Navy joins search operation to trace missing persons in Andhra Pradesh boat accident

Two Navy helicopters have joined the search operation to trace those missing in a boat accident in Godavari river in Andhra Pradesh where a private boat carrying around 60 tourists capsized in the swollen river, leaving eight people dead and 25 others missing near Devipatnam in East Godavari district yesterday.

Indian Navy’s diving team, Gemini boat and associated equipment have been deployed from Indian Naval Station Dega to augment search operations following a request from state administration. NDRF, SDRF and civil authorities have been carrying out search operations since yesterday.

Rescue efforts have been resumed this morning to find about 25 missing tourists in River Goodavai. According to officials, total 27 tourists have been brought to safe by last evening and undergoing treatment. Meanwhile the authorities have found 8 bodies so far.

The State Government has made relief and rescue arrangements including setting up a District control room. 2 NDRF teams have been deployed and a deep divers’ team of the Indian Navy are in rescue operations. ONGC chopper had been pressed into service.

A special team of deep divers with Side Scan Sonar equipment is expected to reach any time from Uttarakhand state. Besides 4 rescue boats and 4 ambulances and local swimmers are available at the spot.

President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah have expressed grief over the loss of lives in the boat tragedy. In a tweet, Mr Modi said, his thoughts are with the bereaved families.