It is just not right... a place frequented by so many tourists cannot be such.
Who lets them be so careless?
After every tragedy, we have shocks & tears and then we have commissions, reports and experts. Yet nothing changes. Precious lives are lost for no reason.
They say that boat capsized since the tourists moved to one side of the boat to watch the wild animals. And experts say that even if every person moves to one side, a boat meant for such trips should not capsize. I heard one survivor say on TV that it was not because the people went on one side, but that the boat turned over while the driver was taking a turn to let the tourists from both sides watch the animals. Whatever be the reason, those who came to a tourist spot to enjoy their holidays, honeymoon, school trips have been let down very badly and Kerala is mourning yet again. Having been on those boat trips many times and twice in Year 2008, I have seldom seen the boats being packed tightly. Only after the lower decks were full would they allow us to enter the upper decks and I read that for every two person in the lower deck, one person is allowed in the upper deck to keep the balance of the boat. Since I grew up in a place not far away and since as children we used to make these trips many times, never in my life time have I heard about an accident at Thekkady. The drivers have always been careful and they know the place well.
I think over the years the number of tourists has grown but sadly the authorities have not grown up in time. There were not enough life jackets and I think this particular boat was not tested right. We heard the current Chairman of KTDC (Kerala Tourism Development Corporation) say that this new boat was built in Chennai and that it had the necessary license but was it right for Thekkady?
As usual, we now read that the Safety Inspectors have not been inspecting right. And now we will have commissions and enquiries and reports. Enough and more money will be spent on these exercises while no concrete steps will be taken to prevent more such accidents.
Sadly Thekkady has now lost its innocence and many like me and my family will not dare make a boat trip in Thekkady.. but does the authorities care?
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