Dozens missing as Bangladesh ferry sinks

DHAKA Fri Feb 8, 2013 11:55am GMT

A relative of a missing passenger mourns after a ferry sank on giant Meghna river, in Munshiganj February 8, 2013. REUTERS/Khurshed Rinku

A relative of a missing passenger mourns after a ferry sank on giant Meghna river, in Munshiganj February 8, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Khurshed Rinku

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DHAKA (Reuters) - A ferry carrying more than 50 people sank on Bangladesh's giant Meghna River on Friday after colliding with a sand barge and dozens were missing, officials said.

About half the passengers managed to swim ashore and a search had been launched, said Mohammad Saiful Hassan Badal, administrator of Munshiganj district, where the accident happened.

The Meghna River is one of three rivers that form the Ganges Delta.

Survivors said the ferry was carrying around 100 people. District officials said it was not overloaded.

Unregulated and overcrowded ferries often run in to trouble on low-lying Bangladesh's extensive network of rivers. Hundreds of people are killed in accidents every year despite government vows to crack down on unlicensed operators.

(Reporting by Ruma Paul; Editing by Nick Macfie)

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