14 killed, 9 missing in Andhra boat tragedy

Vijayawada 16 dead seven missing as boat capsizes

In the mishap, around 9 persons have been confirmed dead while 17 more are still missing.

"According to preliminary investigation, the private agency which was operating the boat did not have a license from the tourism department", he added.

Local fishermen swung into action and rescued 15 passengers, the Press Trust of India reported. The boat with around 38 persons was heading to the Pavitra Sangamam Ferry ghat near Ibrahimpatnam. He said that he heard the screaming of the passengers but the boat capsized in minutes after hitting the sand bar.

The deputy chief minister rushed to the accident spot to oversee the rescue operations and has directed police to rush additional force to help locate the missing persons.

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The state government on Sunday announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakhs to the families of the bereaved. 32 of the victims belong to Ongole town.

Mr Chinarajappa, ministers Akhila Priya, Siddha Raghava Rao and a host of top officials were monitoring the relief and rescue operation and the search for bodies.

Chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu, deputy CM (home) N China Rajappa, leader of opposition Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, state BJP president K Hari Babu and others expressed grief over the incident.

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