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Fishermen missing, counts differ

Nov. 15: Three days after the cyclone hit coastal Bengal, the government said 117 fishermen and 15 trawlers are still missing but the figures provided by a fishermen’s association far exceeded the official count.

The Fishermen and Fish Traders’ Association said 240 fishermen and 22 trawlers from South 24-Parganas, east Midnapore and Howrah are missing. To further complicate matters, fisheries minister Kiranmoy Nanda said seven trawlers with 49 fishermen were still to be traced.

Additional superintendent of police (rural) S.S. Panda alleged that the association was giving “fabricated figures and creating total confusion”.

The Coast Guard continued its search operations today. Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said a body was recovered off Digha this morning.

The government has also decided to pay Rs 20,000 to the kin of people killed in natural calamities.

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