Six persons have been arrested by Jorhat police in connection with the ferry accident between Assam’s Nimati Ghat and Majuli, which left two people dead and scores injured. One person is still missing.
The development came after Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma directed Jorhat police to file a criminal case.
Confirming the development, Superintendent of Jorhat police Ankur Jain said, “We have arrested six persons involved in the movement of the ill-fated ferry on charges of death due to negligence. The investigation is underway,” he said.
The arrested persons have been identified as Dhanbar Das, Jogen Das, Biju Kumar Das, Jayanta Dutta, Binod Baruah and Babul Neog.
However, there is no official word if the ferry was over-loaded and other safety lapses besides unavailability of life saving jackets. Sources said the arrested are the boat operators, helpers and others involved with the movement of the ferries that day.
According to a latest statement from Assam State Disaster Management Authority, the ferry “Ma Kamala” was carrying 92 passengers, out of which 89 were rescued, two died and one person is still missing.
On Wednesday, the accident occurred when a private ferry “Ma Kamala” heading to Majuli from Nimati Ghat collided with a ferry “MB Tipkai” – operated by state’s IWT department – coming from the riverine island.
The accident claimed the life of a 30-year of woman teacher. The body of the second victim, Indreshwar Bora, a teacher of Rajgarh High School, was recovered on Saturday from Bhasa Tapu near Umatumuni Island of Biswanath, 100 kms downstream.
Meanwhile, search and rescue operations for the last missing person is underway by team of NDRF and SDRF.
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