This follows Monday’s accident in which four youths drowned in the river

The drowning of four youths, near Nimishamba temple at Ganjam on Monday has brought into focus the lack of safety measures at the spot.

The victims, students of Maharaja’s College in Mysore, had ventured into the Cauvery for a swim.

At least 3,000 tourists venture into the waters every day. But till now, safety measures such as buoys and ropes, railings, lifejackets, lifeguards, first aid kit and ambulance were not put in place, a senior police officer, who wished to remain anonymous, said. The authorities of the temple, under the Muzrai Department, had hired people only to guard the temple premises.

However, following Monday’s accident, the Mandya district police have decided to put in place safety measures at Ganjam and other popular picnic spots on the banks of the Cauvery.

“We will convene a meeting with officials and local shopkeepers to prevent cases of drowning,” Superintendent of Police Borase Bhushan Gulabrao said.

Speaking to The Hindu here on Tuesday, Mr. Gulabrao added that the department had also decided to keep a vigil at popular water bodies to prevent accidents.

There have been many cases of drowning at places such as Balmuri waterfalls, Muthathi, Bheemeshwari and Galibore fishing camps, Gaganachukki waterfalls and Kere Thonnur, which attract many tourists. At least 400 people have drowned at pilgrim centres and picnic spots in Mandya in the last 10 years, police officials say.

Though authorities have installed boards cautioning people against swimming at Balmuri waterfalls, Muthathi and other places, tourists simply ignore the warnings.


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