x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Muslim pilgrims drown in India ferry disaster

Indian police says an overloaded boat crowded with Muslim pilgrims has capsized in a river feeding into the Bay of Bengal.

Indian police says an overloaded boat crowded with Muslim pilgrims has capsized in a river feeding into the Bay of Bengal. At least 18 people have drowned and dozens are missing.

West Bengal's deputy police director Surajit Kar Purkayastha said that more than 100 people were on the boat when it was toppled on Saturday by a wave from a passing ship near Ghoramara island. The boat's capacity was 60.

Local boatmen rescued 40 people and recovered 18 bodies before rescue efforts were called off because of darkness.

Fishermen and Indian naval personnel resumed searching for the missing this morning.

The pilgrims had been returning to Kakdwip town after offering prayers at the Hijli shrine in East Midnapur.