Death toll in AP boat mishap rises to 19

Amaravati: Toll in the tourist boat accident in river Godavari in Andhra Pradesh mounted to 19 as seven more bodies were retrieved today. But taking out the boat that sank over 315 feet deep in the river is proving to be a herculean task, police said.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Md Ehsan Raza said 19 bodies were recovered so far and many more could be trapped inside the boat. Teams of expert divers of Navy and NDRF continued the search for the bodies. The search teams found the bodies floating far away from the accident spot at Kachhuluru in East Godavari district.

One body was found near the coffee dam of Polavaram project while another was recovered near new Pattiseema and was identified as that of a person from Hyderabad based on an ID card. One body was found near a crest gate of Sir Arthur Cotton Barrage at Dowaleswaram, police said. Identity of some of the deceased was yet to be established, they said. The bodies have been shifted to the government hospital in Rajamahendravaram.

River Godavari has been in spate for the past few days and over 5.13 lakh cusecs of floodwater was flowing on Sunday when the mishap occurred. The Chief Minister had directed the East Godavari district Collector Muralidhar Reddy to conduct a probe into the tragedy.