Safety Concerns Rise as Tourism Department Battles GoPro Use in Ganges Rafting in Rishikesh

November 16, 2023 – The Tourism Department has prohibited the operation of GoPro cameras by rafting guides during rafting in the Ganges. Despite regulations, rafting guides continue to use GoPro cameras, posing a risk of capsizing rafts and endangering the lives of tourists. In the past year, three tourists have lost their lives due to raft overturning incidents.

The use of GoPro cameras distracts guides during rafting, diverting their attention from ensuring the safety of tourists to capturing photos. This distraction has led to multiple instances of rafts capsizing in the turbulent waves of the Ganges, making swift rescues challenging for the guides. Guides are often motivated to encourage tourists to take photos and videos, promoting the use of GoPro cameras.


In some cases, tourists themselves insist on capturing photos and videos through the GoPro cameras, and guides charge fees ranging from five hundred to fifteen hundred rupees for the service. In the interest of tourist safety, the Tourism Department has issued a ban on the use of GoPro cameras by rafting guides. However, the enforcement of this ban seems to be lacking, with orders merely remaining on paper.

Despite the ban, guides continue to use these cameras during rafting adventures in the Ganges, risking the safety of both guides and tourists. The tragic deaths of three tourists in the past year highlight the urgent need for stricter enforcement of safety measures during rafting activities.