Tension prevails as ‘tour operator’ surfaces

  • Naresh K Thakur, Hindustan Times, Mandi
  • Updated: Jun 15, 2014 09:55 IST

Tension prevailed for a while at Pandoh Dam near Mandi on Saturday as a man named Murari Krishna claimed to be the tour operator of the group of students washed away in the Beas river.

Angry parents of the missing student alleged that the person was absconding since six days. “We had doubt that why no one from the family of Prahlad, cotour operator also believed to be washed away in the Beas River, has come here,” said Rattnakar Reddy, maternal uncle of Rishita Reddy, who is in missing list.

“We tried the contact the phone number given against his name in the list of missing and some lady picked up the phone but later switched off,” said Reddy.

“Then this man appeared and claimed that Prahlad was his cousin. When we inquired about him he reveled that he was the tour operator and was with group at the time of incident,” said Reddy.

Another parent Krishna Reddy alleged that the college administration was trying to hide the fact that the tour operator was alive.

“They are conspiring and trying to put the blame on innocent children for the mishap. Now this man has appeared after six days of the incident. He is also changing his statements about the incident,” said Reddy.

Some of the angry parents also manhandled the said tour operator. Later, the police intervened and took him away.

They alleged that when they asked for his licence of the tour operator, he failed to produce it.

“He even didn’t know English or Hindi then why he was allowed to take the students on the excursion trip, ” said Reddy.

Meanwhile, Murari Krishna claimed that he had stopped the students from going towards the river but they ignored his suggestion. He said that he was not absconding.

Police said they would interrogate the tour operator about his whereabouts during the past six days.

Meanwhile, the parents also alleged that the college administration was also pressurizing the surviving students not to give anti-college statements.

However, when Telangana home minister Narsimha Reddy was asked about it he said that the Telangana government had already said that the college administration was responsible for what happened and action would be initiated against them.

“We will also investigate about the tour operator,” said Reddy.

The college administration also refuted the allegation saying that they had given a statement that the deceased students should not be blamed for the incident.

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