The deep divers of the National Disaster Response Force and Bhakra Nangal continued to search for the bodies of the three missing youths out of the five who were swept away by the Beas yesterday. The bodies of two victims, Palwinder and Harjit, were recovered last evening.
The families of the youths are still in shock. Raj Kaur of Wazir Bhullar village was inconsolable. She lost her two sons in the incident. She was forcibly sent home where she was given some medication.
However, her mother-in-law, Jeet Kaur, is still at the spot waiting for the bodies of her grandsons – Paramjit Singh and Karamjit Singh.
“Karamjit was adamant to bathe in the river on occasion of Baisakhi though Paramjit and his mother Raj Kaur were against it. But later, they gave their consent. When the heavy flow pulled Karamjit, Paramjit tried to save him. But he was also swept away,” Jeet Kaur said.
The streets of Wazir Bhullar village wore a deserted look today as the village lost four youths in the incident.
Jaswinder Singh, an eyewitness who saved four youths from drowning, said he had advised them not to go far. He said the water level increased suddenly and that led to the accident.
The people pointed out that every year, people from around 20 villagers gather here to bathe in the river on Baisakhi. However, the administration did not depute any rescue teams.
The police authorities, on the other hand, said that though they had a team of divers near the spot, they didn’t have any equipment to initiate a rescue operation.
SAD MLA from Baba Bakala Manjit Singh and Deputy Commissioner Varun Roojam reached the spot. Manjit Singh said the government had announced Rs 1 lakh as compensation for the next of kin of the deceased.
Jasdeep Singh Saini, SSP, Amritsar rural police, said the police would recommend the name of Jaswinder Singh, who rescued four youths, for a suitable award.