Seven teenagers, who were attending the first death anniversary of their friend’s father, drowned in Penna river at Siddavatam town in Andhra Pradesh’s Kadapa district on Thursday evening, the police said.
“While bodies of two youth were retrieved from the river late in the night, two more bodies were recovered on Friday morning,” Siddavatam sub-inspector of police Ramesh Babu told HT.
He said a search operation was on to recover the bodies of the remaining three. “We suspect the bodies might have been caught in the sand at the bottom of the river. All the victims are in their teens in the age group of 16-19 years,” the SI said.
The youngsters – Somasekhar, Jaswanth, Jagadeesh, Sateesh, Rajesh, Chennu and Tarun – all students from Tirupati, came to Siddavatam to attend the rituals of the death anniversary of their friend Iruvuri Sivakumar’s father, Iruvuri Ramachandraiah, who died of heart attack last year.
After the completion of the rituals, all friends went to Penna river on the outskirts of Siddavatam for a bath. “While Sivakumar returned to the shore after some time, the remaining seven went little deeper into the water, which was flowing at a high speed. Apparently, they failed to judge the depth of the water and were washed away,” the police official said.
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Sivakumar and others on the river bank alerted the police, who rushed to the spot immediately and took up search operations. They pressed expert swimmers into service and at around 9 pm, they managed to recover the bodies of two youths, identified as Somasekhar and Rajesh.
“This morning, we could recover two more bodies. We are in the process of identifying the victims,” Ramesh Babu said, adding that the bodies of the remaining three were expected to be retrieved by the evening.
The bodies have been shifted to the local government hospital for post-mortem and the case is under investigation, the SI said.
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