When the Perumon Railway accident claimed 106 lives, the Railways claimed that the accident was the result of a tornado virtually lifting the bogies off the track. The Railway official, who conducted the inquiry, even distorted testimony of witnesses, to arrive at the conclusion. Though the railways was forced to order a re-investigation under public protest, the finding did not change. However, any school boy in Kerala knows that tornadoes do not occur in Kerala.

The investigations into the boat tragedy at Thekkady also seems to be taking similar course. The Chief Inspector of Boats have come up with the strange conclusion that one of the possible reasons for the tilting of the boat could be wind. Well Thekkady is not known for tornadoes or hurricanes. What sort of boat it would have been, if it would roll over if a strong wind hits it? We have to wait to seen whether the Collector, who has received the report, will accept this finding and what sort of story the Crime Branch would come up with. Then only will we know whether the official are “preparing the ground” for the judicial enquiry.

Anyway, something seems to be amiss about the whole affair. Five Ministers rushed to the spot on hearing about the accident. (This was indeed not an exercise to curry favour with voters, for they knew most of the victims were from outside the State and that the Keralites would forget the accident before the next elections.) Of them, the Water Resources Minister was equipped with the information that the boat had the clearance of the Inspector of Boats. The very same authority is now saying that the boat could have met with the accident because of winds.

Now, see this report which says that the boat neither had a fitness certificate or insurance.