At least 32 people died Friday when a packed ferry caught fire in southern Bangladesh, police said.
“The three-story Obhijan 10 caught fire mid-river. We have recovered 32 bodies. The death toll may rise. Most died from the fire and a few by drowning after they jumped into the river,” local police chief Moinul Islam told AFP.
The incident happened early in the morning near the southern rural town of Jhakakathi, 250 kilometers south of the capital, Dhaka.
The accident was the latest in a string of similar incidents in the low-lying delta country crisscrossed by rivers.
Experts in the South Asian country of 170 million people blame poor maintenance, lax safety standards at shipyards and overcrowding.