Guwahati, India (BBN) – More than 100 people, most of them women and children, were feared killed after a ferry capsized during a storm in the country’s northeastern Dhubri district on Monday.
The vessel was reported to be carrying at over 200 passengers on the Brahmaputra river in the country’s Assam state.
Over 100 people are missing, while dozens of others either were rescued or made it to safety, according to reports.
Police officials said it happened in the remote district of Dhubri, about 350km west of Assam’s main city, Guwahati, during heavy winds and rain.
The vessel which left Dhubri around 3:00 pm to Medertary with the passengers, grocery items and some motorcycles on board, had almost reached the ferry station when it entered the eye of a cyclonic gust. Under the impact of the cyclonic storm, the boat got itself wrecked into pieces and sunk in the river with its occupants, local media reported.
Assam state Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said emergency teams were in place but nightfall and bad weather were hampering rescue efforts.
In a statement, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said he was “shocked and grieved” by the incident.
Mr Singh has “given instructions for all possible assistance to the government of Assam in relief operations”, the statement noted.
BBN/SSR/AD-01May12-3:40 am (BST)