Clinging on to a small piece of wood that was once a part of his boat, Narain Sarkar kept his head just above the frigid but rough water for about two hours before being rescued.
“I was loosing hope and started thinking of giving up when a boat emerged out of the waves. I waved at them though it seemed they had already seen me,’’ he said.
A native of West Bengal, Narain was inside the Oceanic when he heard a loud thud in the rear of the fishing boat. “Before I could figure out anything, I was thrown into the water, going deep down instantly and bouncing back at once’’ he said.
Befor he could recover from the shock of his life, Naran began swimming to nowhere until he found a piece of wood. ‘Manjumatha’, the boat which came to the rescue saved both Narain and Edwin, who was also floating around in the same area.
Those missing from the boat were identified as Yesunathan, Rajesh, Dinesh, Paulson, Arun, Sahayaraj, Salom – all natives of Tamil Nadu and Bipul Das of West Bengal. Shaiju, the lone Keralite on board is a native of Maliankara, in North Paravur, Kochi.
Meanwhile, the Munambam fishing harbour witnessed some anxious moments after the news of the mid-sea collision broke out. People began to throng the harbour from the morning and they refused to disperse even after three bodies were brought to the shore.
Sahayadasan, elder brother of brother of Yuganathan, one of the deceased and Sapan Sarkar, brother-in-law of Bipul Das, one among those went missing, were among those gathered at the spot.
Anger spills over
Furious over the alleged inaction by the authorities to curb the rising number of mid-sea accident, they also staged a protest demanding immediate steps to ensure that ships should not “intrude” into territorial waters 200 nautical miles unless while calling at a port.
Archbishop Soosa Pakiam M. who later visited Munambam lamented that he remained apprehensive of the fate of fishermen as society didn’t accord them the consideration extended even to dogs and cats. “No one seems to be able to guarantee their safety,’’ he bemoaned.
The postmortem of the three persons were conducted at Kalamassery Government Medical College Hospital and were handed over to the relatives.
Ernakulam Rural Police chief Rahul R. Nair was among those who visited the harbour.
Before I could figure out anything, I was thrown into the water,
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