Launch capsizes after collision with cargo vessel in Bangladesh, 27 dead
- A launch carrying over 100 passengers capsized after colliding with a cargo vessel
- The incident took place in Narayanganj district, which is about 16km from Dhaka
- the Dhaka Tribune reported that the cargo vessel fled the scene after the collision
A launch carrying over 100 passengers capsized after colliding with a cargo vessel in Bangladesh's Shitalakkhya river resulted in at least 27 deaths, officials said on Monday.
The incident took place in Narayanganj district, which is about 16 km from Dhaka, on Sunday evening, PTI reported. The rescue team comprised of officials such as the Navy, Coast Guard, fire service and police.
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Five bodies were recovered on Sunday, with rescuers retrieving 22 bodies on Monday as a salvage vessel pulled out the launch with the help of a huge crane around midday, rescue officials said.
“The salvage operation is ended,” Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) Chairman Commodore Golam Sadek told newsmen here, while live TV footage showed wailing family members and relatives of the victims crowding at the scene.
The passenger vessel, ML Sabit Al Hasan, sank after colliding with the cargo ship, SKL-3, at the mouth of the Syedpur Koyla Ghat on the Shitalakkhya River in Munshiganj. The launch was en route Munshiganj.
As quoted by police and onlookers, the Dhaka Tribune reported that the cargo vessel fled the scene after the collision.
Narayanganj Deputy Commissioner Mostain Billah said that a seven-member committee headed by Additional District Magistrate (ADM) was formed to investigate the incident.
The district administration will give a compensation of Tk25,000 (USD 296) to each of the deceased's family for the burial process, he added.
The probe panel has been asked to submit its findings in the next five days.
BIWTA has also formed a four-member panel to probe the mishap.
The launch is estimated to have 150 passengers. Port Police Officer-in-Charge (OC) Deepak Chandra Saha confirmed that 50-60 of them were able to swim in the two banks, but three of them had to be rushed to the hospital.