Information Relating to Boat Accident in Andaman & Nicobar Islands
22 persons have died in the accident as their boat capsized in the sea in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. The preliminary report available suggests that the boat was carrying more passengers than authorized and while life jackets were available on the boat, passengers were not advised to wear them.
The Ministry of Tourism has not formulated any guideline for boat passengers. The guidelines for safety of boat passengers operating in the inland waters are provided under the Inland Vessels Act 1917.
Training and provision of safety equipment for various activities for adventure tourism, boat rides etc. including safety-precautionary measures to prevent any untoward incidents are under the purview of the concerned State Governments. The Ministry of Tourism has formulated a set of guidelines on Safety and Quality Norms on Adventure Tourism as BASIC MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR ADVENTURE TOURISM ACTIVITIES in 2009. These guidelines cover Land, Air and Water based activities which include mountaineering, trekking, hang gliding, paragliding, bungee jumping and river rafting. “The Basic Minimum Standards have been circulated to all the State Governments and Union Territory Administrations”.
An FIR has been registered under section 304/34 of the Indian Penal Code by the Andaman & Nicobar Police. Three persons namely Shri T.Chandra Shekharan (Manager of the boat), Shri A. Prabhu, (Boat Master) and Shri Narottam Gomasta (Crew) had been arrested immediately after the incident and remanded to police custody, which had been extended by 4 days by the Court of Chief Justice Magistrate. The owner of the boat Smt. T. Jaya has also been arrested after investigation and remanded to judicial custody for 10 days. Detailed investigation of the case is in progress.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Tourism (I/C) Shri K. Chiranjeevi in a written reply to a Unstarred question answered on 13/02/2014 in the Rajya Sabha .