Disasters & Accidents

At least 2 dead, several missing after boat with 100 people capsizes in India

Bhagalpur, India, Nov 5 (EFE).- At least two people have died and several are missing after a crowded boat carrying 100-150 people capsized on Thursday in the Ganges River in the eastern state of Bihar in India, officials said.

Two bodies have been recovered while at least 15 injured were taken to a local hospital, Mani Paswan, a police sub-inspector, told EFE.

The accident occurred around 8 am local time in the Naugachia area of Bhagalpur district, said Paswan, who is posted at a police station in the area.

 The officer said that the boat was carrying between 100 to 150 people, much beyond its capacity.

The overloading, he said, might have caused the accident.

Authorities have launched a large-scale search operation to rescue the survivors and look for bodies in the river.

He said the number of casualties might increase.

The tragedy occurred in the middle of regional elections in Bihar, one of the poorest states of India and also its third-most populous with poor infrastructure.

Boat mishaps in rivers and lakes are not uncommon in India, often due to the precarious condition of the vessels and overloading of the passengers beyond the permissible limits.

In January 2017, at least 24 people died after a boat capsized due to overloading in the Ganges river in the city of Patna, the capital of Bihar.

In September the same year, at least 19 people drowned and around 10 more were missing after the boat in which they were traveling capsized in the Yamuna river in Baghpat area in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.

At least 12 people died, 21 were missing when a boat sank in the Hirakud reserve in Sambalpur district in the eastern state of Orissa in February 2014.

In July 2013, at least 10 people, including nine children, died when an overcrowded boat shipwrecked in the Kosi river in Bihar’s Madhepura district.

In late January, 21 people died when their boat sank near the Nicobar and Andaman Islands in the Bay of Bengal.

In 2012, more than 100 people died when a ferry sailing on the Brahmaputra River in the northeastern state of Assam went down after a powerful storm broke it in half. EFE


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