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Dozens missing as ferry capsizes in S. Bangladesh

(Xinhua)

14:12, March 13, 2012

DHAKA, March 13 (Xinhua) -- An overcrowded ferry carrying about 200 passengers capsized early Tuesday in a mighty river in Bangladesh's southern Munshiganj district, some 27 km southeast of capital Dhaka, with dozens of people missing, local police said.

Mohammad Shahabuddin Khan, Police chief in Munshiganj district, told Xinhua that 35 people have been rescued but still dozens of passengers are missing.

No bodies have been retrieved yet, he said, adding that fire brigade personnel and locals including fishermen were still searching for those missing people.

He said that many passengers were able to swim ashore after the accident at about 02:00 a.m. local time on Tuesday but could not tell immediately about the exact number of the missing passengers.

He said a rescue vessel has been called in to boost local efforts to salvage the ferry.

Ferry and boat disasters are common in Bangladesh, which is crisscrossed by about 250 rivers. Ferry is still a key means of transport in the country. Most of them are often overcrowded.

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