Eighteen of the 33 fishing trawlers that went missing in the Bay of Bengal following heavy rains have been traced today.
The 18 trawlers, which have been traced through radio communication had drifted into waters in the jurisdiction of Bangladesh, South 24 Parganas District Magistrate N S Nigam said.
Some of the fishermen on board the trawlers have taken ill and the Coastguard is sending a hovercraft to evacuate them, Nigam said. The weather has also improved and efforts are being made to trace the remaining missing trawlers, he said.
Asked about the number of fishermen on board the trawlers, he said that each fishing vessel had between 16 to 20 persons, including the crew, on board. A Coastguard ship and a Dornier aircraft despatched yesterday to look for the trawlers were impeded by low-level high speed air circulation and low clouds.