Twenty-eight people are known to have drowned when the M.V.
Miraj-4 capsized on the Meghna river near the capital, Dhaka, on
About 40 people swam to shore and 35 were rescued, police and
rescue officials said, meaning about 100 people were unaccounted
for as wailing relatives thronged the river bank.
"Now it is more than 20 hours since the ferry sank, so there is
no possibility to find anyone alive inside the vessel," Saiful
Hassan Badal, deputy commissioner of Munshiganj district, told
Low-lying Bangladesh, with extensive inland waterways and slack
safety standards, has an appalling record of ferry accidents,
with casualties sometimes running into the hundreds and many
vessels overcrowded. Each time, the government vows to toughen
Relatives of passengers protested over the slow pace of recovery
"It is more that 20 hours, but we see no visible progress," said
Sabuj Mia, a survivor, who said he had been waiting for news of
his missing son.
Most of the passengers were city workers and students heading
home for the weekend beginning on Friday.
Passenger Abdur Rahman, 50, who managed to swim to shore, said
passengers had asked the captain to pull into the shelter of the
river bank when a sudden storm struck.
"But he ignored us ... the ferry capsized within a few seconds,"
Another passenger who swam to shore, Liton Hussain, told
reporters he had lost his wife, son and daughter.
Hundreds of people, including wailing relatives of missing
passengers, thronged the river bank at the site.
In March 2012, a ferry sank near the same spot, killing at least
The accident happened a month after an overloaded South Korean
ferry sank, killing more than 280 passengers, many of them
children on a school field trip. The captain and three senior
crew members were charged with homicide on Thursday.
(Writing by Nick Macfie)
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