At least 19 people have drowned in a boat accident in Southern India, most of whom locked themselves in a lower cabin of the vessel to escape a storm, Police and officials said.

The apparently overloaded ferry was caught in rain and gusty winds, and capsized in the Godavari river in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh on Thursday.

There were a total of 37 people on the boat.

Seventeen persons were rescued, or were able to swim to safety and one was missing, said the district’s top official, Kartikeya Misra. About 200 rescue personnel took part in the operation to pull the vessel from the riverbed in waters over 12 meters deep, to bring it ashore.


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