Two Bengaluru sisters were drowned in the Cauvery river near Mekedatu at Bommasandra in Ramanagaram district on Sunday afternoon after they slipped and got caught in the turbulent waters there, which is also infested with crocodiles.
"Around 2.30pm, the girls slipped and were caught in a whirlpool that dragged them into deeper waters," The Times of India quoted a police officer as saying.
The bodies of the sisters, identified as Mona, 14, and Lisa, 12, could not be recovered until Monday evening.
The police have deployed three teams of swimmers for the search. The rescue team believes the bodies could have been washed away to the Tamil Nadu side.
"We have deployed expert swimmers and the fire and emergency services rescue team to locate the bodies, but there is no trace," the police said. The police have deployed rescue teams along the shores as well.
"We feel the bodies have been washed away as there are whirlpools in the river. We suspect there are crocodiles in the area, where even fishing in banned as a measure of safety... If we cannot find the bodies, we expect them to surface in another 24 hours," a rescue team member told TOI.
The girls had gone on a picnic with their father J Rajnikanth Reddy and mother Parvathamma along with several others. They are residents of Rajajinagar in Bengaluru. Mona was a Class IX student while Lisa was studying in Class VII.
Reports suggest some people in the 60-member group, including the deceased girls and one boy, had entered the waters despite a warning sign. When they saw the sisters and the boy drowning, some elders jumped into the river to save them. However, they could save only the boy while the girls were caught in the whirlpool.
"After lunch, some family members, my children and my friend Madhusudhan Reddy's son ventured into the water. The three children suddenly began screaming as they were carried away by strong currents. We elders rushed into the water but could pull out only Madhusudhan Reddy's son, while my daughters were washed away," Reddy told the police.