A double decked ferry carrying more than 380 passengers from Dhubri to Fakiragram capsized in middle of the river due to storm. More than 200 feared dead while 50 people have swam to safety. 49 people have been rescued alive so far.
Army, BSF and other security forces have began rescue operations and so far 103 bodies have been recovered as per latest reports.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called up Assam Chief Minister, Tarun Gogoi and condoled the deaths and asked rescue operation to be sped up. ( This report will be updated again)
UPA Chairperson, Sonia Gandhi, Assam Governor J B Patnaik, Asom Gana Parishad newly elected President Prafulla Kumar Mahanta and many leaders of expressed deep sorrow over the tragedy.
Two Assam Cabinet Ministers Chandan Brahma and Nazrul Islam have left Guwahati for Guwahati to look after rescue and relief operations.
Health and Education Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma has spoken to health commissioner and has asked a team of doctors from Guwahati Medical college to visit Dhubri.
It may be mentioned that, Brahmaputra, which flows through Assam for almost 700KM has just three bridges over it, near Guwahati, Tezpur and Goalpara. A fourth bridge, Bogibeel is under construction for last 15 years since 1996. Foundation stone was laid by two Prime Ministers H D Devegauda and A B Bajpeyee.
So, at most other places, people use ferry to cross the Brihmaputra river whose bredth is more than 10KM at various places.