Andhra Engineering students die in Himachal Pradesh: Conspiracy suspected

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Himachal Pradesh
Bangalore, June 10: Twenty five engineering students including six girls have been washed away as water from Larji dam was released suddenly to Beas river in Himachal Pradesh on Sunday, June 8. Hours after the tragic accident, blame game has begun and it also has been suspected that the young students might have become victims of a conspiracy.

According to media reports, local people suspected that sand mafia and their alleged connection with officials might have created such situation in which the innocent students died.

Localites raised question about the timing of water release.They claimed that water could have been released at night as days are longer in summers and people indulge in many activities on the riverbank.

Localites raised question about the timing of water release

According to a few villagers, sand mafia becomes active in the evening at the region. One of the villagers was quoted as saying, "The authorities often release the water in the evening to flush out the silt deposited in the reservoir. The project authorities release the water at the time convenient for the sand mafia to extract sand illegally."

Media reports also quoted villagers as saying, "The local administration also doesn't act against the illegal mining. Even the railing on the roadside have been stolen or damaged by sand mafia who has laid small roads to the riverbank from national highway."

Meanwhile, Himachal Pradesh High Court asked the state government to submit its report within seven days. Justice Tarlok Singh Chauhan said, "Going by contents of news items, it is a sad tale that sheer fun of young students turned fatal as a consequence of utter and callous negligence of power project authorities."

A group of nearly 50 students from Andhra Pradesh were travelling on buses to the tourist hill station of Manali when they stopped in the Kullu Valley, some 200 kilometres (130 miles) from state capital Shimla.

Water from the dam was released suddenly when the students were taking pictures on the riverbank. While some claimed that siren was not heard before water was released,GP Sanjay Kumar asserted, "The sudents must not have heard it because of the noise from the river."

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