Channagowda Malipatil, aged around 50, was inconsolable over his 22-year-old nephew Narayana Gowda going missing in the sea while fishing. “He was married four months ago. His wife will be coming from her house to his house in just a few days. See our fate,” Malipatil said with a choked voice.

He and other family members of Narayana Gowda were in Mangalore on Friday to request the Police Commissioner Seemant Kumar Singh to expedite the search for their relative. Narayana Gowda, a native of Hiresindhagi village in Koppal district, was one among the six fishermen who went missing after a fishing boat got damaged in the sea near Ullal here early on Thursday.

It was the higher wages in Mangalore that made Gowda and his aunt's son Siddanagowda to come to the city's fishing harbour. There were many from North Karnataka who worked in the harbour. “We have to do this to earn our livelihood as agricultural income is not sufficient,” he said. Sidddangowda said he and Narayana Gowda left in separate boats 10 days ago. Narayana Gowda called Siddanagowda to inform him about completing his work on Wednesday night. “He even informed me at around 11 p.m. about anchoring their boat and cautioned me about the rough condition at the bar-mouth,” he said.

Siddanagowda returned to the fishing harbour around noon on Thursday when he was informed about the damage of a boat. “I got confirmation about Narayana Gowda's presence in the damaged boat when I was told the boat drivers name as Srikant. Narayana Gowda had told me his name before he left,” he said.

Siddanagowda then informed his relatives. Channappagowda Malipatil said they did not get proper information from Ibrahim, the boat owner. “The union representatives were sending us from one place to another.”

Mr. Malipatil said they had come to meet the Police Commissioner only to get help in finding Narayana Gowda.


Helicopter deployed for search operations September 17, 2011

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