35 missing in Bangladesh ferry accident; two women confirmed dead

The bank of River Sandhya collapsed and a huge slab of mud fell on the ferry.

Two women died and dozens of people went missing after an overcrowded ferry capsized in a river in southern Bangladesh on Wednesday.

The police said the rescue teams are still searching for the survivors.

Ziaul Hasan, a police official in the southern district of Barisal, said the bank of the River Sandhya collapsed and a huge slab of mud fell on the ferry while it was anchored alongside.

"About 35 people are missing. The search operation is underway," he told Reuters.

The Wednesday ferry incident is the latest in a country with a lengthy record of river boat accidents.

Bangladesh is a country with extensive inland waterways. Every year hundreds of people lose their lives as boats sink due to overcrowding, one of the common factors in many of the accidents, or poor maintenance of the vessels.

The Authorities say the safety standards are not up to the mark and hence they are prone to accidents.

Whenever there is an accident the government vows to toughen the regulations but somehow it fails to do so.

In 2015, nearly 69 people died after a boat collided with a cargo ship and sank in a river in central Bangladesh.