Twenty-nine people went missing as a Malaysia-bound motorboat sank during a storm near Shamitipara area in the Bay of Bengal yesterday morning.
The boat had set sail with 30 passengers from Bakkhalir Mohona area on Saturday evening to go to the neighbouring country illegally.
Shaheen, who hails from Narsingdi, was the only lucky man who could be rescued by the locals. He was being treated at Cox's Bazar Sadar Hospital.
The 35-year-old said they were illegally going to Malaysia with the help of some brokers but could not name anyone.
“We had gathered at a house at Naziratek in Cox's Bazar Sadar area before getting on to the boat. We were told to pay our money to the brokers only after reaching Malaysia,” Shaheen added.
A team of police went to the spot where the boat sank but found no one, said Md Mahfuzur Rahman, officer-in-charge of Cox's Bazar Police Station yesterday.
Police were trying to detain the culprits behind the incident, he said.
Asked about the rescue operation, the police officer said he had no idea about it.
“It's the local administration's job,” the OC said.