Eight dead as boat capsizes in Karwar

Eight dead as boat capsizes in Karwar

Locals rescued two persons while 10 others managed to get onto the boats nearby. Search for the missing is underway.

Eight people, including five women and a two-year-old male child drowned after a boat carrying 25 to 30 devotees to Narasimha Deva festival at Kumargud island capsized in the sea one nautical mile from Rabindranath Tagore beach in Karwar on Monday.

Though the boat capsized around 3 pm, the district administration was alerted about the accident at about 5 pm. Indian Coast Guard , Karnataka State Coastal Police (KSCP) and Indian Navy launched a rescue operation. The Navy and local fishermen succeeded in rescuing over nine devotees.

KSCP, with its three boats and the Indian Coast Guard with an interceptor boat, rescued eight people. With the help of a Dornier aircraft from Goa and Navy’s Chetak helicopter, the search for missing passengers continued late into the night on Monday. “In order to expedite the ongoing rescue work, Coast Guard ship Amartya was also diverted,” DIG S S Dasila, Commander, Coast Guard Karnataka told DH.

Sources in KSCP informed DH that devotees had set sail on fishing boat Shree Rameshwar Prasanna in the afternoon. At the confluence of river Kali with the sea, the boat capsized due to rough waves.

While the women and the child drowned in the rough sea, a few people managed to get into the boat ferrying Karwar MLA Rupali Naik.

The deaths could have been prevented, said Dasila. “There were serious lapses and none of the passengers on the boat had life jackets,” informs the Coast Guard Commander. Had the passengers been wearing life jackets, they could have been saved,” he adds.