Boat tragedy: Niranjan condoles loss of life

for a new law to prevent recurrence

Bhubaneswar: Asking Chief Minister
Naveen Patnaik not to take boat capsizing incident in Hirakud reservoir, where
nearly 30 persons were feared killed lightly, former Minister and senior
Congress leader Niranjan Patnaik urged him to ensure framing of a new law to
prevent recurrence of these events in future.

condoled the massive and unfortunate loss of life in Hirakud reservoir due to
capsizing of a boat carrying members and families of the Lions Club of
Sambalpur and has said that the Lions community and families who had been
helping the people of the state need all our sympathies and support at this
In a
letter to the Chief Minister, Niranjan said, “Such boat tragedies are occurring
in the state in regular intervals and the authorities seem to be learning no
lessons from them, almost so as to say that they are acts of God and
unavoidable. In any system of modern governance there must be a strong
regulatory framework for in-land water ways for the safety of the people. How
and why are boats without adequate safety jackets, trained crew, communication
back-up etc being allowed to carry passengers? Who is responsible for such
tragic loss of life?  The state needs to
have a strong enough department of in-land water ways to regulate boats and
ferries used across the many rivers, lakes, reservoir and other water bodies
for transporting passengers. Unless a boat meets safety requirements, it should
not be allowed to carry passengers. In fact, there is a need for a
comprehensive legislation so that standards are laid down and liabilities for
violation of safety norms are clearly established.”

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