Warning issued against boatmen in Chilka lake

Berhampur: Ganjam district administration today warned strict action against boatmen who ferry passengers on fishing vessels in Chilika lake after four persons were drowned in a boat capsize last week.

Fishery department officials were also directed to review the status of the fishing boats operating in Chilika lake within a week, officials said.

“Fishing boat is meant for fishing purpose and boatman will be punished if they are found carrying passengers in it,” Ganjam District Collector Prem Chandra Choudhary said during a meeting.

“License, fitness and other status of the boats should be verified during the review,” the Collector said.The officials should also ask the boatmen for immediate registration of their boat, he said.

The warning came after four persons died when a boat which was on its way to Ghantasila from Sabulia, carrying 31 persons, including five children, sank in the Chilika lake after losing balance leading to the arrest of two boatmen in connection with the mishap.

The collector has also asked the fishery department officers to dispose off license applications and help them to get their licence quickly.