11 dead in MP boat capsize

Bhopal, Sep 13 (IANS) Eleven persons are drowned after a boat capsized during the Ganapati immersion here in Madhya Pradesh early on Friday, police said.

The accident took place around 4.30 a.m. at Khatlapura Ghat of lower lake near the newly renovated state police headquarters and the State Disaster Rescue Team (SDRF).

Police said according to preliminary information, there were 19 people on the boat. Five people were rescued and three people were missing.

The accident occurred when a heavy idol of Ganesha tilted in the boat in mid-waters.

According to eyewitnesses, two boats were interlinked, carrying 23 people. All people were aged 27-28 years. No one was wearing a life jacket. As one boat overturned, people from it tried jumping on to the other. And the balance was lost.

Those killed were residents of 100 quarters of Piplani, BHEL township. The Municipal Corporation said the rescue operation is being handled by its divers.

SDRF teams, divers and police teams are continuing the search through heavy rain.

Chief Minister Kamal Nath has announced an ex gratia of Rs 4 lakh to each of the dead and ordered a magisterial inquiry into the incident.

Former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has raised the negligence issue and wondered why the processionists were not equipped with life jackets. Hi also not satisfied with compensation.

–IANS

naidu/in

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