Five bodies have reportedly washed up ashore in Valsad, Gujarat. According to sources, three of the deceased are wearing life-saving jackets leading the authorities to suspect that they may be part of the crew from barge P-305 or the tugboat Varaprada that went missing six days ago when Cyclone Tauktae barrelled through the Arabian Sea.
Efforts are on to ascertain their identities.
At least 15 people are still missing from the sunken barge P-305 and 11 from tugboat Varaprada that went adrift. The Indian Navy has now deployed specialised diving teams to boost the search mission.
Sixty-one bodies have been pulled out of the sea so far. Hopes of finding more survivors of the Cyclone Tauktae fury have receded. Barge P-305, which housed personnel engaged in maintenance work of an offshore oil drilling platform of state-run oil and gas major ONGC, sank on Monday evening off the Mumbai coast during the cyclone. The barge had gone adrift in the cyclone fury before sinking.