Andhra govt resumes boat services in river Krishna

Amaravati: The Andhra Pradesh government on Saturday resumed boat services in river Krishna, nearly four months after they were halted in the state in the aftermath of tragic boat capsize incident on river Godavari that claimed more than 50 lives.

A total of five boats — with a maximum capacity of 12 — belonging to Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation (APTDC) have been given permission to operate in river Krishna.

Tourism Minister Muttamsetti Srinivasa Rao announced that as many as 109 boats are ready for operations and will be allowed to resume services after a final check within a week.

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Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy had ordered the cancellation of all 170 boats operating in the state on grounds that there was no proper policy for monitoring them. Accordingly, all boats needed to get No Objection Certificates from port officers located at Kakinada and Machilipatnam.

Rao further said that the three control rooms being constructed by the government to tighten procedures to issue licenses will be operational by the end of February.

On September 15, the Royal Vasishta boat capsized in river Godavari. Of the 77 persons on board, only 26 persons survived. The boat was brought out of the river and pulled to the shore on October 22.

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