While Krishnashtami being celebrated everywhere on Friday, five families of Kanuru village were plunged into an unending sorrow as six boys drowned in the Krishna river near Pedapulipaka in Penamaluru mandal.
The deceased were identified as Ch Ratnababu (14), N Rakesh alias Pandu (15), Ch Phanindra (13), D Surya (12), Nalluri Raviteja (14) and Nalluri Yesupadam (12).
The bodies of Surya, Ratnababu, Raviteja and Rakesh were retrieved from the river within two hours after the fateful incident.
A search is on for the bodies of the remaining two victims when reports last came in.
All the victims who were residents of Harijan Colony in the village, were studying at the ZPH School.
Samrajyam, mother of Yesupadam and Raviteja, lamented that her sons left home on the pretext of playing cricket. Later, they went for a swim in the river.
“I lost my husband recently. Now, I lost my two sons also,” she said, weeping inconsolably.
Madala Avinash, who also went to the river along with the victims, told Express: “We were playing on the banks of the river when they entered it for a swim. As they do not know swimming, they all drowned in the river. Though we shouted for the help of a boatman, he did not respond to our cries. We saw helplessly while they were drowning.”
He was among the four of the 10 boys who did not enter the river, which has been in spate for the last few days.
Vijayawada RDO S Venkat Rao who visited the spot, said 10 members of the National Disaster Response Force were pressed into service to trace the bodies of Phanindra and Yesupadam. The operation is being supervised by Penamaluru CI K Dharmendra.