Vijayawada. At least 16 people were killed after an overloaded boat capsized in Krishna river, seven people are still missing since the incident. There were 38 tourists on the boat belonging to a private operator and most of them were not provided life jackets.

The National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF) and Krishna district authorities are undertaking search and rescue operations to trace the missing people.NDRF and Local fishermen from the vicinity rescued 15 people.

The incident occurred around 5.45 PM when a private tourism boat was making a trip from Punnami Ghat, Bhavanipuram, to Pavitra Sangamam, Ferry village, the official said. The overloaded boat capsized midway due to the weight of 38 passengers, the police official said.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu, Deputy Chief Minister N China Rajappa, leader of opposition Y S Jaganmohan Reddy and others expressed grief over the tragedy. The deputy chief minister rushed to the accident spot to oversee the rescue operations and has directed police to rush additional force to help locate the missing persons.

Most of the passengers were said to be members of the Ongole Walkers Club in Prakasam district while some were from Nellore who were on a visit to Vijayawada.

State home minister China Rajappa, who was supervising rescue operations at the accident spot, announced an ex-gratia payment of Rs 5 lakh each to the kin of the deceased.