A trip to beautiful picnic spots along the Cauvery has proved to be tragical for many as the death toll there increases every year.
Sangama (which is the confluence of Akravathi and Cauvery), Muthathi, Mekedatu and Marukottai in Karnataka and Hogenakkal in Dharmapuri district of Tamil Nadu are the most popular picnic spots along Cauvery but the spots have proved fatal for many who visited them.
Sangama, Marukottai and Hogenakkal officially received tourist status but Muthathi and Mekedatu have been made popular as a picnic spot by the localities.
Information displayed by local administration at the entrance of Sangama in Karnataka, to create awareness about the danger, says 69 dead bodies were recovered there in 2010-2012. Likewise, 95 in Muthathi, 90 in Mekedatu and more than 90 deaths in Hogenakkal have been reported.
Most of the bodies were recovered but a few remained untraceable in cases where the victim was killed in crocodile infested places. Villagers blame vacationers for the tragedies because they enter into prohibited places.
According to police, 50 per cent of the deaths were associated with alcohol and the rest were accidents or suicides.
The police has identified dangerous spots and erected warning boards in Tamil, Kannada and English to caution people and prevent deaths.
“People defy the warnings and enter prohibited areas of Cauvery, like in the case of two Britons killed recently” said B. Navin, inspector of Sathanur police station of Ramanagara district in Karnataka.
The suggestion of local people and police to impose a ban on entry into Mekedatu and Muthathi in Karnataka is under consideration of the Karnataka government.