Death count down, says govt – The Telegraph

PICTURE OF PIETY: Women observe Chhath rituals in the Falgu river in Gaya on Friday. Picture by Suman

Patna: Sixteen people drowned while offering arghya on Friday. According to the state disaster management authority, two deaths each were reported from six districts while one person each died in four districts.

Anirudha Kumar, additional secretary, State Disaster Management Authority, said: “This year 16 people drowned while 47 had drowned last year.”

As per state government rules, the family members of the victims will get Rs 4 lakh each as compensation.

Sources said that the six districts where 12 people died were Arwal, Jamui, Samastipur, Muzaffarpur, Vaishali, Araria and Banka. In Arwal, cousins Abhinandan Thakur and Dipak Thakur drowned in the Punpun river. Sources said the two had gone to offer arghya.

Shailendra Kumar, SDPO, Arwal, said: “The two preferred to offer arghya on the other side of the river where there was less movement of NDRF and SDRF personnel.”

In Muzaffarpur, the body of Chotu, 14, was recovered from Panapur village. A youth drowned in the Ganga at Tersiya Ghat in Hajipur.

The unconfirmed death toll includes road accidents too. A youth, Shravan Kumar, was killed on the Patna-Aurangabad NH 98. Sources said speeding vehicle hit his bike in Arwal. Road accidents were also reported from Gopalganj, Muzaffarpur, Vaishali and other districts.

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