Asia

Bangladesh ferry: 100 still missing after capsize

  • 5 August 2014
  • From the section Asia
Bangladeshi onlookers gather near the scene where an overloaded ferry capsized in the Padma river in Munshiganj, some 30 kilometres (20 miles) south of the capital Dhaka, on August 4, 2014. Image copyright AFP
Image caption Crowds gathered on the banks of the Padma as rescue teams searched for survivors

More than 100 people remain missing a day after a ferry capsized near the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka.

Rescuers have still not located the vessel, which sank in Munshiganj district, 30km (20 miles) from Dhaka.

Navy teams are using sonar to try to find the boat, which was carrying people returning from Eid celebrations.

Accidents are common on Bangladesh's river network and scores of people are killed every year, with overcrowding and poor boat quality often to blame.

Emergency teams rescued about 100 people from the ferry, the Pinak-6, on Monday.

Officials say choppy waters and strong currents are making efforts to find the ferry difficult. Thick silt on the Padma River bed is another complicating factor.

More than 200 people were thought to have been on the ferry - some accounts put the figure at 350. Officials say it had a capacity of 150.

Not all the missing are presumed dead. Some may have swum ashore and not been accounted for, reports say, but most are feared to have drowned.

Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan said the search for the ferry had been extended, AFP agency news reports.

"My cousin's three daughters were also on the ferry. One of their bodies has been found, two are still missing," Mr Khan told reporters.

Two women were pulled from the water on Monday but died later.

Boats are the main form of travel in some rural parts of Bangladesh.

In May about 50 people died when a ferry sank in the same district.

More on this story