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3 dead after ferry with schoolchildren sinks in Arabian Sea off India coast

A ferry boat carrying mostly teenage schoolchildren sank in the Arabian Sea off India’s western coast on Saturday, killing three students, police said.

The police and the navy involved in the rescue operation said another 29 children were rescued after the incident off Dahanu, a town in Maharashtra state.

All the students on the boat have been accounted for, said police officer V.J. Sankha.

Earlier, the Press Trust of India news agency said 32 children were rescued during search operations using a plane, helicopters and some ships. It also said the schoolchildren were on a picnic when the accident occurred.

India Boat Accident

This screen grab from video shows rescuers looking for survivors and bodies. The schoolchildren were reportedly on a picnic when the boat bank. (K.K.Productions via Associated Press)

Police officer U.J. Sankha said the rescue operation had been completed with the recovery of the boat that capsized in the sea.

The funeral for at least one of the students who died, Sanskruti Mayavanshi, has already been held.

Moshudi Pervez Sheikh, a 17-year-old girl who survived, said the boat tilted and sank as the schoolchildren moved to one side to take selfies using smartphones.

Such accidents are common in India, where many ferry boats are poorly built and often overcrowded, and there is little regard for safety regulations such as providing life-jackets.

Boats are often the main mode of transport in remote areas.


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