Despite Rise In Boat Mishaps, Odisha Govt Yet To Learn Any Lesson

Bhubaneswar: It seems the Odisha government and local district administrations are yet to learn any lesson from several incidents of boat mishaps which are on the rise across the State.

The recent boat tragedy in Brahmani River near Khadagprasad ghat under Motanga Police limits in Dhenkanal district on Saturday is a vivid example of such an apathetic nature of the concerned officials.

As per latest reports, while body of one person was recovered today morning from Panigengutia ghat, three persons are still missing. Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force(ODRAF) and Fire Services personnel are continuing the search operation to trace them.

In another incident, a boat carrying around 30 persons had capsized in Budhabalanga river near Haldia ghat under Remuna block in Balasore last evening.

One of the reasons behind rise in such mishaps is said to be boats operating without licence and not following basic safety norms like carrying lifejackets.

Speaking on the issue, Transport Minister Padmanabha Behera, said, “Nobody is ready to obey the rules. We have taken stringent action against the accused following the death of many people in several boat mishaps in the past, however, nobody is serious about it.”

“As we cover small distance and often cross the river by boat, we have developed a habit of travelling without lifejackets,” said one Jyoshnarani Dalei.

Chitrasen Karan, a boat owner, said, “There are lifejackets in my boat. However, it is difficult to take them out and use them. People also deny using the lifejackets as they travel short distance.”