Madikeri: In a tragic incident, a 21-year-old tourist from Hyderabad succumbed to injuries at a private hospital in Mysuru on Feb. 16 where he was being treated for the injuries he had sustained when a rafting personnel assaulted him on the head with a wooden oar at Dubare Rafting Camp coming under Nanjarayapatna Gram Panchayat near Kushalnagar on Feb. 15.
The deceased tourist has been identified as Razi Ahmed (21). He had come along with other tourists from Hyderabad in three buses.
The tourists, on Feb. 15 had gone on rafting when the raft in which Ahmed and others were rafting got stuck between the rocks as there was less water in the river.
Soon, verbal duel ensued between the rafter (the person who guides the raft) and the tourists resulting in Ahmed and the rafter exchanging blows in the raft.
When the raft was brought back to the banks of the river, a team of other rafters joined together and tried to compromise the issue.
But again, a fight broke out with one of the rafter hitting the head of Ahmed with the wooden oar resulting in severe injuries to the head of Ahmed. The rafters also attacked other tourists resulting in injuries to tourists identified as Yousuf, Abdulla, Rajashekar, Nasir and Azahad.
Soon, Kushalnagar Police, who arrived at the spot on being informed, admitted Ahmed and others to Kushalnagar Government Hospital, where first aid was provided to them.
Ahmed was later shifted to Columbia Asia Hospital in Mysuru for further treatment where he breathed his last on Feb. 16 after failing to respond to the treatment.
Kushalnagar Police who have collected footages captured by CCTV cameras installed at vantage points at the rafting venue, have arrested seven rafters identified as Prakash, Manjunath, Yadu, Somaiah, Mahesh, Nasir and Deepak.
It is alleged that though Dubare Rafting camp comes under the Tourism Department, there is a lobby among the rafters to take tourists for rafting at fancy rates (There is no fixed price for rafting) and there are a lot of illegal rafters than licensed rafters at Dubare Rafting Camp.
Locals said that though they had submitted a memorandum to the District Administration to stop the menace of illegal rafters, no action has been taken till date.
Kushalnagar Police, who have registered a case in this regard, are investigating.