Sunken Royal Vasishta Boat retrieved form Godavari; five bodies recovered, 7 still missing

East Godavari: Operation Royal Vasishta, which envisaged retrieving the sunken tourist boat Royal Vasishta, has become a success. The officials have pulled out the boat from River Godavari in Devipatnam Mandal in East Godavari on Tuesday.

Dharmadi Satyam of Balaji Marines, a private company, retrieved the boat with support from Visakhapatnam-based scuba divers. Satyam and his team found five bodies, which were beyond identification, in the ship.

The Vasishta Punnami Royal boat, carrying 77 passengers to Papikondalu, capsized near Kachuluru in Godavari River on September 15. The local populace saved 26 passengers from perishing in the tragedy. With the recent recovery of five bodies, the death toll has risen to 44, while seven bodies are still missing.

Satyam said the remaining seven bodies might be trapped in the sand in the boat. They would recover the remaining seven bodies, once they pull the ship to shore, he added.

The relatives of the missing passengers have been waiting for the recovery of the bodies. The semi-decomposed bodies have been sent to a government hospital for autopsy. Sources said that since the recovered bodies were beyond identification, the district administration and police might request medical team authorities to conduct DNA tests for identifications.

Many people and organisations have submitted proposals to pull the boat to shore. The internal committee comprising of Port, Navy, Irrigation, Fisheries and JNTU personnel handed over the operation to Balaji Marines for salvage operations, allocating Rs 22.7 lakh for the process. The district administration appreciated Dharmadi Satyam for his efforts, which involved the usage of traditional methods with iron ropes and pulleys.

Adnan Nayeem Asmi, Superintendent of Police of East Godavari, said they arrested the president of Sir Arthur Cotton A/C Boat Owners’ Association Geda Veera Venkataramana Satyanaga Murali, and Yerramsetty Raja Rao. They oversee the Papikondalu Boat Owners and Agency Welfare Association in connection with the boat tragedy. The investigation is on to arrest a few others as well, Asmi added.

Also Read: https://newsmeter.in/andhra-pradesh-begins-the-second-phase-to-retrieve-the-sunken-boat-from-godavari-river/

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