Naval divers today found bodies of three naval personnel from ill-fated submarine INS Sindhurakshak which exploded and sank at the Mumbai dockyard early Wednesday.
"Three bodies have been recovered from the submarine by our divers but their identity has not yet been ascertained," Navy sources said.
The Navy diving teams have been working non-stop to reach into the compartments of the submarine INS Sindhurakshak since rescue operations commenced early noon yesterday.
The boiling waters inside the submarine prevented any entry till noon. Access to the inner compartments of the submarine was made almost impossible due to jammed doors and hatches, distorted ladders, oily and muddy waters inside the submerged submarine resulting in total darkness and zero visibility even with high power underwater lamps.
Distorted and twisted metal within the very restricted space due to extensive internal damage caused by the explosion further worsened conditions for the divers.
This resulted in very slow and laboured progress in the rescue operation. Only one diver could work at a time to clear the path to gain access.
After 36 hours of continuous diving effort in these conditions, Navy divers have finally reached the second compartment behind the conning tower in the early hours today.
Three bodies have been located and extricated from the submarine from this compartment. The bodies are severely disfigured and not identifiable due to severe burns.
The bodies have been sent to INHS Asvini, the naval hospital, for possible DNA identification which is likely to take some more time.
The state of these two bodies and conditions within the submarine leads to firm conclusion that finding any surviving personnel within the submarine is unlikely. The damage and destruction within the submarine around the control room area indicates that the feasibility of locating bodies of personnel in the forward part of the submarine is also very remote as the explosion and very