Bangladesh navy locates sunken ferry | india | Hindustan Times
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Bangladesh navy locates sunken ferry

Bangladesh navy experts used sonar to find the remains of a ferry nearly half a kilometre (mile) from where it sank in a huge river whirlpool last week, killing more than 400 people.

india Updated: Jul 15, 2003 10:42 IST
PTI

Bangladesh navy experts used sonar to find the remains of a ferry nearly half a kilometre (mile) from where it sank in a huge river whirlpool last week, killing more than 400 people.

"The ferry has been located 120 ft (40 metres) under water, about 300 metres (yards) away from the site of sinking," Navy Lieutenant Commander Mahbubur Rashid told reporters.

"It has been partly buried under mounds of sand."

Salvage officials said rain and wind still hampered operations, but some 177 bodies had been pulled from the Meghna river as it makes its way to the Bay of Bengal.

"Efforts to salvage the M.V. Nasreen will continue for few more days," said a government official in Chandpur district, where the ferry sank.

The triple-deck Nasreen -- licensed to carry 300 people -- had more than 600 aboard when it plunged into the Meghna near the town of Chandpur, 170 km (106 miles) southeast of the capital, Dhaka.

Only about 200 people managed to reach the shore or were rescued by fishing boats after the ferry went down around midnight on Tuesday while most aboard were asleep.

Ferry disasters occur frequently in Bangladesh, where marine laws are rarely enforced despite huge loss of life every year.

At least 450 people were killed in a similar ferry accident in May last year at almost the same spot.

Of 20,000 ferries plying the country's many rivers and coastal waters, only 8,000 are registered and just 800 have fitness certificates, shipping officials say.