Frequent Drowning Deaths A Cause For Concern in J&K

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Frequent Drowning Deaths A Cause For Concern in J&K

Rameez Makhdoomi


Kashmir is blessed with many beautiful lakes, rivers and diverse water bodies. But drowning deaths happening at regular intervals are a major cause of concern. Drowning deaths across the region, especially in Kashmir are a painful reality. It leads to devastation of scores of families and the loss of precious lives.

The drowning deaths highlight the lack of swimming skills among most of us Kashmiris despite the fact that our land has so many water bodies.

Experts have advised from time to time that we must have swimming as an essential part of our school curriculum and training.

Recent Drowning Tragedies

On Nov 2, one person was feared dead after a boat capsized in Wular Lake in Bandipora district. Fortunately, two others could make it back to the lake embankment.

In September, we witnessed a major tragedy when four persons including three sisters died after drowning in a nallah at Chetredi village of Ramnagar tehsil in Udhampur district. Even at tourist spots, especially during summer, we often hear the sad happenings of drowning deaths.

We Do Not Have Lifesavers Near Waterbodies

The common public also deplore the fact that Kashmir is often in news for these drowning deaths. In sea tourism related spots of our country like Goa and Kerala, we hardly see news reports of any such deaths despite the turbulent seas. There, more lifesavers are deployed at the waterbodies to save precious lives.

Besides being a life saving skill, swimming is a great activity. But the problem with most people is that they feel that they are too old to learn swimming or other skills.

Swimming Must Be Taught At School Or College Level

Manzoor Ahmad, a fellow Kashmiri told me, “The drowning deaths in water bodies and tourism spots across Kashmir are a matter of serious concern. Teaching swimming skills to our children and youth can go a long way in preventing drowning deaths. We need a strategy to prevent these drowning deaths in an organized manner.”

This is a serious issue. It needs the attention of the Administration, of the educational institutions and also of the people.

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