J K boat news

Location: Jammu and Kashmir — In response to the tragic boat capsize in the Jhelum river that resulted in the loss of six lives, authorities in Jammu and Kashmir have announced the formation of a committee tasked with developing a comprehensive policy to regulate water transportation.

The decision was made during an urgent meeting convened by the Kashmir Divisional Commissioner, Vijay Kumar Bidhuri, on Tuesday. The meeting brought together officers from various departments to deliberate on strategies to prevent similar incidents in the future and enhance safety protocols for water transport.

To immediately address safety concerns, Commissioner Bidhuri has issued an advisory requiring all passengers on water vessels to wear life-saving jackets. “Our priority is to ensure the safety of our citizens and prevent such heart-wrenching incidents from recurring,” Bidhuri stated during the meeting.

The newly established committee, led by Kashmir Additional Commissioner Qazi Sarwar, includes representatives from the district administration and other relevant departments. One of their first directives is to conduct a safety audit of all existing water transport means.

Further, the committee will look into licensing and regulation of boats and other water transport vehicles plying the Jhelum river and surrounding water bodies. Another significant directive issued by Commissioner Bidhuri is the strict prohibition against overloading boats beyond their capacity.

The tragic incident occurred early Tuesday morning near Gandbal Nowgam on the outskirts of the city, where a boat, primarily carrying school children, capsized due to the river’s rising water levels after recent incessant rains. The local community and authorities swiftly responded to the emergency, but despite their efforts, six lives were lost.

Concurrently, officials discussed the ongoing construction of a bridge at Gandbal Batwara, which is expected to be completed by June 30. Commissioner Bidhuri urged the Roads and Buildings Department to ensure the bridge is completed without delay, which could also serve as an alternative route to improve safety and reduce dependency on water transport.

This tragic event has sparked a pivotal move towards stricter regulation and enhanced safety measures for water transportation in the region, aiming to safeguard lives and prevent the recurrence of such devastating accidents.