ibnlive » India

May 02, 2012 at 11:51am IST

Assam boat accident: Bad weather hampers rescue operations

Guwahati: It has been over 36 hours since the tragic accident in Dhubri in Assam. By Tuesday morning, 103 were confirmed dead. From then on, there has been no recovery of any more bodies, as bad weather continues to hamper rescue operations at the site.

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi is expected to visit the accident site on Wednesday at 2 pm. Rahul will be accompanied by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi to the site.

Meanwhile, the families of those who died and those who are missing have been inconsolable.

A distraught relative of a victim said, "My brother and my sister-in-law have died in the accident. They have two kids. God only knows who will look after them now."

Minorities Affairs Minister Nazrul Islam said, "Till we get the missing information, we will not be able to find out the actual number of deaths... that is difficult for us..."

It was right in the middle of the river when the accident took place. The ferry was crossing the river when it met with a cyclonic storm and apparently as per reports, the ferry broke into two parts.

Ticket sale records for the boat show there were 280 people on board. So where have all the people disappeared?

IG BSF PK Behal says that most of the bodies would have been sucked away. They have now asked for Bangladesh's help.

Against the fury of nature, the rescue work seems increasingly futile. Despite tragedies like the Assam boat disaster, for the people who live along the great Brahmaputra in the state, ferries and flimsy boats remain their lifeline to civilisation.