The Indian Coast Guard has begun a search operation for wreckage and bodies from the Pakistani fishing vessel that the Defence Ministry said sank after its four-member crew blew it up >on being intercepted .
Pakistan, meanwhile, >rejected the report that the fishing boat had anything to do with it. Foreign Office spokesman Tasnim Aslam told media that no boat from Karachi had gone to the open seas on the night that the Coast Guard said it had intercepted the “explosives-laden” vessel.
The Coast Guard has so far not recovered any piece of evidence from the debris to establish the identity of the vessel and the crew on board.
“The search is on. The boat did not have a name. We are looking at the debris. The boat has sunk completely and the depth of the sea is great. We are also looking for the bodies. Pakistan can keep rejecting. We received intelligence inputs and based on the inputs we intercepted the boat,” Coast Guard Inspector-General (IG) Kuldip Singh Sheoran, Commander, Coast Guard Region (North-West), told The Hindu .
At a press conference in Gandhinagar, Mr. Sheoran said the crew members of the fishing vessel did not appear to be fishermen.
“They were dressed in T-shirts and shorts and did not look like fishermen,” he said.
Moreover, despite several warning signals the boat kept changing course and manoeuvred the waters in “a zig-zag” manner in total disregard for the signal to stop.
“After we received the inputs we deployed our Coast Guard Dornier aircraft and our ship Rajratan,” Mr. Sheoran said.