Thursday, 21 November 2019

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Ferryboat capsize in Southern Burma; 31 drown, 21 missing

New Delhi (Mizzima) – Two boats collided in Nga Wun River killing 31 people, while 21 are missing, officials of the Basein (Pathein) District Peace and Development Council (PDC) said today.

Ferryboat ‘Nay Myo Tun’ plying on the Basein-Thetkethaung route collided with a barge carrying diesel at the mouth of the Nga Wun River near Shan Gu village, south of Basein in the Irrawaddy Division on 15 November at about 7:45 p.m.

Around 126 passengers  of a total of 178 were rescued and bodies of eight males, including a monk and 23 women have been found so far, an official from the Basein PDC office told Mizzima.

“The figures are according to the news updated on Monday,” he said.

The survivors from the mishap are 102 men and 24 women. They are  sheltered at Basein Town Hall on Strand Road.

The rescue operation is still being spearheaded by the Red Cross and Fire Brigade.

But  the official from the District PDC warned that the number of casualties are likely go up as the number of passengers, estimated on the number of tickets sold, has not all been found.

“The small boat was overcrowded. Many passengers were unemployed people going to the Thetkethaung salt fields seeking jobs. The helmsman on the boat was a rookie and not used to the route,” a local resident living on Basein Strand Road told Mizzima.

The unclaimed bodies were not brought back to Basein but cremated in Shan Gu village.

Local residents said that four people were detained in the Ahthe Gyi police station in connection with the accident, but the police station refused to comment when contacted.


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