Paradip and Siali beaches, which attract tourists from across the country, have claimed 21 lives in the last one year. This has raised questions about security of tourists in both the beaches.
On Saturday, Paradip Marine police found the bodies of the three persons who had drowned in the sea while taking bath on Thursday. They are Aju Kumar Das, Arjun Chandra Panigrahi and Raju Kumar.
Despite the rise in such incidents, the officials concerned are yet to take any step to educate tourists about safety measures to be taken while bathing.
Apart from the three persons, 13 people have drowned while bathing in Paradip and five in Siali in last one year. Sources said the stretch between Hanuman temple and Sandhkuda area in Paradip has been witnessing high tide since the tsunami hit the southeast coast of India in 2004. Unaware of the phenomenon, tourists venture into the sea leading to mishaps.
Even as large number of tourists visit the beaches, there is hardly any security measure like life guards or life jackets. Although the district authorities have been apprised of the situation, no step has been taken so far.
The district tourist officials refuted any laxity on their part. District Tourist Officer Arabinda Kumar Jena said higher authorities in the Tourism Department have been informed about rising number of drowning cases in both the beaches.
The Department has requested the Paradip Port Trust to provide 1,000 sq ft of land near Paradip sea beach to open a public utility centre which would be used to store life jackets and rubber tubes for safety of the visitors.
He further said even as sign boards have been installed at both Paradip and Siali beaches asking the tourists not to venture into the sea during high tide and to seek the help of the local fishermen engaged to help
them take bath in the sea, they do not follow the instructions. Besides, combined efforts of the district administration, police, hoteliers, NGOs and the local fishing community are required to ensure safety of tourists, he added.
“The sea current is particularly strong during full moon and new moon. People should be careful while taking venturing into the sea,” Jena said.
■ Sixteen people have drowned while bathing in Paradip and five in Siali in last one year
■ The stretch between Hanuman temple and Sandhkuda area in Paradip has been witnessing high tide since the tsunami hit the southeast coast of India in 2004
■ The Department has requested Paradip Port Trust to provide 1,000 sq ft of land near Paradip sea beach to open a public utility centre