In a major development in Assam, the rescue team of SDRF recovered the bodies of the two persons who went missing on Wednesday after a hand boat reportedly capsized at Sonbeel lake under Ram Krishna Nagar police station in Karimganj district.
Karimganj SP Mayank Kumar informed on Thursday that after a nightlong search operation, the bodies were recovered at around 11 am.
Meanwhile, sources at the Karimganj District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) informed that the boat capsized owing to the storm which swept across parts of the district on Wednesday.
Among the five persons including the boat owner who drowned, three persons were rescued on Wednesday while the search was on for the remaining two.
DDMA sources also informed that the Deputy Commissioner of Karimganj in Assam has sought for an exhaustive report of the incident and the process to provide ex-gratia to the kin of the victims is underway.
Out of the five passengers sailing on the boat, Nilesh Das, his son, 17-year-old Ajit Das, and 7-year-old Dhanu Das, son of Manoranjan Das have been rescued. Nilesh Das is the owner of the boat and all of them are residents of Fakuragram village.
50-year-old Ujjala Das, wife of Amaresh Das, a resident of Kalyanpur village, and 10-year-old Hasi Das, daughter of Bishnupada Das, a resident of Santipur village, died.
“After an almost 15-hour long search operation, we have managed to recover the bodies. Now these will be sent to Silchar Medical College and hospitals for post-mortem and later it will be handed over to the family members,” said circle officer Vanlal Nampui Biate.
He wondered how the incident happened at a time when movement of individuals is restricted after 2 pm along with a ban on tourism activities amid the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic outbreak. He suspected some locals were using boats as their basic mode of transport despite the lockdown hours and storm warnings.