Teknaf, Bangladesh: Fishermen from Bangladesh rescued over 175 boat-people from Bay of Bengal while floating in the sea on November 23, according to a fisherman from Shapuri Dip.
“A fishing trawler with 175 boat-people left for Malaysia by sea-route on November 11. But, on the way to Malaysia, the engine of the boat was damaged and it was floating in the sea for 13 days.”
The boat-people got connection with some relatives on this situation and told them regarding the event. So, their relatives requested some fishermen who were fishing in the Bay of Bengal to rescue the boat-people. However, Later, the relatives didn’t get connection with boat-people because of less network of cell phones in the sea. As a result, they were floating in the sea for long time, said a boat-people on condition of anonymity.
However, on November 13, two more fishing boats went to the deep sea and rescued them on that night. They were brought to the land and were sent to their destinations on November 14, in the early morning.
On being tipped off, police went to the spot, but they couldn’t arrest anybody from the group, according to sources.
One of the boat-people from the group said, “We went to nearby Akyab (Sittwe) of Burma while the engine of boat was damaged suddenly. So, we were floating in deep sea where fishermen don’t go there for fishing. But, we are lucky as fishermen saved our lives.”
“We gave Taka 30,000 to brokers (Leaders) in advance and the remaining money will be paid in Malaysia after reaching there. Among us, some are Bangladeshis and most of the people are Rohingyas,” he said.
He also said that they had food for 8 to 10-days, but they faced food and water shortage after 10-day. They starved for long in the sea.
“If fishing boats don’t rescue us, we will die within some days,” said another rescued boat-people.