The Gujarat marine police Saturday began investigating the seven Somali nationals found unconscious in an abandoned boat, without food or water, off the state's coast.
Indian fishermen had located the abandoned boat off the coast of Veraval in Saurashtra region Friday and alerted the coast guard and security agencies.
The seven, believed to be fishermen, were in a bad state having run out of food or water. They had to be carried ashore and were admitted to hospital.
According to preliminary information gleaned by the marine police, the seven said that they were fishing in the high seas when pirates attacked them and looted their nets and other belongings. The pirates had also taken away the radio equipment and damaged the engine.
Their craft had subsequently drifted into Indian waters.
Police are trying to check out their story. ”We will do a thorough check of their credentials," police said, adding that they did not rule out the possibility of their being pirates themselves.