'No safety measures in ill-fated boat'


 Bodies being pulled out of the boat. PTI

Smitha Maurya, who saw the mishap from another boat close by, said there was no life jacket or life guard in the boat.

A tourist from Tamil Nadu, who managed to swim to safety, said the accident took place within half an hour after the cruise began.

The boat tilted when most of those on board moved to one side to have a better glimpse of a herd of deer grazing close to the bank.

 He said the boat sank in the middle of the lake. I don’t know how I managed to escape from the capsized boat,” he said.

Most of the tourists who boarded the boat were from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Delhi, he said.

Smitha’s husband Pankaj Maurya said four to five boats were cruising in the lake at the time of the accident.

“We were shocked to see the boat turning to one side and getting submerged. Immediately, we started the rescue operation by throwing air-filled tubes and rope and whatever we could place hands on”, he said.

According to them, official rescuers, including police and forest officials, came about 30 minutes after the mishap.

Pankaj Maurya said he informed about the accident to the driver of his vehicle, who was on the shore, over mobile phone, who passed the information to the police.
There were no prior instructions on safety aspects by the boat crew before undertaking the journey.

All they had said was that no accident had taken place in the lake in the last 50 years, he said.

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