Two National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) teams with 30 members each have been sent for rescue operations. Several passengers have been reported missing yet.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy has ordered immediate suspension of licenses of all boats operating in the Godavari River and has ordered an inquiry into the matter. He has also announced Rs 10 lakhs ex-gratia each to the families of the deceased.
The river has been tempestuous for the past few days, and over 5.13 lakh cusecs of floodwater was flowing on Sunday afternoon when the mishap occurred.
Addressing to the media, Tourism Minister Muthamsetty Srinivasa Rao said that the boat, Royal Vashishta, didn’t have the permission from the Tourism Department but had permission from the Kakinada port authorities.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter to express grief over the mishap and said, “Extremely pained by the capsizing of a boat in Andhra Pradesh’s East Godavari. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. Rescue operations are currently underway at the site of the tragedy.”
Reportedly, police and other rescue teams have started off from East and West Godavari districts for the accident spot, but it could take some time for them to reach because of the swollen state of the river.