Home India News 19 Durga Puja revellers drown in Bihar boat accidents

19 Durga Puja revellers drown in Bihar boat accidents


Patna : Durga Puja festivities turned tragic for some families in Bihar when two overloaded boats carrying revellers capsized in the Bagmati and Kosi rivers respectively, drowning 19 people. At least 40 passengers are missing, police said Tuesday.

Both the accidents took place Monday evening and the victims were mainly women and children who were unable to swim to safety.

In the first incident, villagers were returning from a fair to mark the end of Durga Puja in Khagaria, about 200 km from here. The boat with a capacity of 30 was carrying over 60 villagers on Bagmati river.

“Till now, 10 bodies have been recovered; 15 of the passengers managed to swim to safety or were rescued but nearly 40 people are still missing,” Satish Chand Jha, a district administration official, told IANS.

More bodies are likely to be recovered in the next few hours, he added.

“Chances of survival of the missing people are remote as the boat capsized Monday evening. It has been over 12 hours, so we fear the worst,” another official said.

In the second accident, nine people were killed and one person was missing when a boat capsized in Kosi river in Darbhanga district, about 150 km from Patna.

“Nine bodies, mostly women and children, have been recovered. Eight of the people, all male, managed to swim to safety or were rescued, but one man is still missing,” an official in the Darbhanga district magistrate’s office said.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has announced a compensation of Rs.150,000 for the families of victims.

Opposition Rashtriya Janata Dal chief Lalu Prasad and Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan expressed shock over the incidents.