Boat Capsizes In Chilika, 4 Dead

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Bhubaneshwar: At least four persons, including a child, died and seven others went missing when a boat capsized in the Chilika Lake in Ganjam district on Saturday.

The incident occurred about two km from the shore when a motorised boat on its way to Ghantasila from Sabulia, carrying 29 persons, including five children, sank in the lake after losing balance, a police officer said.

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The victims, after attending a wedding at Sabulia yesterday, were going to Ghantasila for a picnic.

Local fishermen and boatmen fished out the bodies of four persons, including a girl, while seven passengers are missing, the officer said.

The rest of the passengers were brought to the shore by the rescuers and are being treated in local hospitals, Ganjam District Collector P C Chaudhury said.

While 15 persons are being treated at MKCG Medical College and Hospital at Berhampur, the rest were admitted to hospitals in Rambha and Khallikote, he said, adding their condition is stable.

Teams from Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force and fire brigade personnel have been pressed into service for the rescue operation, Chaudhury said, adding local fishermen and police personnel are engaged in searching the missing people, while a team from NDRF is also set to join.

Apart from the district collector, IG of police (Southern Range) Amitabh Thakur and senior officials are supervising the rescue operation.

Expressing grief over the incident, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has announced Rs 4 lakh ex gratia for families of each of those killed and free treatment for those in hospital.

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