Mumbai: Navy divers have recovered the bodies of four sailors from the mangled remains of INS Sindhurakshak which sank off the Mumbai coast following two massive explosions. The Navy says that there is no chance of any of the 18 sailors aboard to have survived the explosions in the subamarine.
"The bodies are severely disfigured and not identifiable due to severe burns. The bodies have been sent to INHS Ashiwini, the naval hospital for DNA identification," said Defence PRO Narendra Vispute.
One of the 18 men on board was Jiju Lawrence who had even accompanied the submarine to Russia for refitting. Jiju had returned from wedding leave only a day before the incident.
"His mother spoke to him the day before this happened. He told her that he has asked for leave to come home for Onam. He was happy," said Jiju Lawrence's uncle.
The four recovered bodies are charred beyond recognition and have been sent for DNA identification. The operation to recover the remaining bodies will continue - but the challenge is massive. Normally for fully-submerged submarines, a mobile platform is deployed directly above. Robotic arms are fused to the submarine to bring it up.
But since the Sindhukrakshak is only nose down, divers are attempting to seal breaches in the hull. A long flexible chute will then be inserted through the hatch to pump out water. Pontoons may then be attached to the submarine bottom to push it to the surface.