Sambalpur (Odisha): Odisha government today engaged scuba divers and undertook aerial search to trace at least nine persons missing after the boat capsize incident in Hirakud Dam.

Sambalpur District Collector Balwant Singh, who supervised the night-long rescue operation, said 11 persons have died in the mishap.

As the administration could not recover more bodies during the night-long rescue operation in the Mahanadi river, the state government engaged a team of scuba divers to fish out bodies suspected to be trapped beneath the capsized boat, special relief commissioner (SRC) P K Mohapatra said.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who is on a two-day tour of the state, will be visiting the accident site today.

“Rahul Gandhi will visit the accident site and review the situation there. He has made certain changes in his programme,” OPCC president Jaydev Jena said.

Odisha’s Revenue and Disaster Management Minister S N Patro and Finance Minister Prasanna Acharya have also rushed to the spot.

The incident took place yesterday when around 120 people from the Lion’s Club of Sambalpur, Hirakud and Bargarh, were returning after going to other side of the reservoir for a picnic.

Eleven bodies were handed over to their family members last night after post-mortem.

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