Murud Beach tragedy: Missing student’s body fished out

Raigad (Maharashtra), Feb 2 (IANS) The body of a student missing in Monday’s drowning tragedy at a beach here was fished out of the waters on Tuesday, an official said.

The Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard personnel had resumed their air and sea search for the missing student, Saif Madki, and after over three hours, located his body floating in the waters at Murud Beach.

An Indian Navy Chetak helicopter and an interceptor speedboat had resumed search for Madki at daybreak — 15 hours after a massive tragedy struck there, killing 13 other students, including 10 girls, of Pune’s MCES Abeda Inamdar College.

The students were among 130 besides a dozen of teachers and support staffers who had come for the college-sponsored annual picnic which soon turned into a tragedy.

While 13 bodies were recovered and another six students were rescued from the treacherous waters by late Monday, Madki’s body was found nearly 18 hours later.

Maharashtra Governor C. V. Rao and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis have expressed grief and deep shock over the tragedy and the state government announced an ex-gratia of Rs.200,000 to the families of each victim.

Aged between 19 and 23 years, the victims were mostly students of BSc (Computer Science) of a minority-run institution in the Azam Campus of Pune’s Camp area.

They are: Rafiya Ansari and her sister Shafiya Ansari, Sumaiya Ansari, Sheefa Kazi, Supriya Pan, Sana Shaikh, Swapnali Salgar, Sajeed Choudhary, Iftekar Shaikh, Samreen Shaikh, Mohammed Ansari, Farin Sayyed and Rajlaxmi Pandugayala.

Although the exact cause of the mass-drowning is unclear, local fisherfolk and villagers claimed that they had warned the students against venturing too far out in the sea waters. Their warning went unheeded.

Murud village is globally renowned for the famous 15th century sea monument — the imposing Murud-Janjira Fort, around one km off the coast in the Arabian Sea and approachable only by boat.

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