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54 bodies recovered from Bangladesh ferry disaster

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Ferry capsizes
  • Authorities recover 54 bodies after overcrowded ferry capsizes
  • Boat had capacity of 1,500, but 2,000 people onboard
  • They were traveling homes for the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha

(CNN) -- Authorities have recovered 54 bodies after a ferry crammed with people capsized in southern Bangladesh, police said Sunday.

Among the victims were 22 children and 15 women, said Nazrul Islam, the police chief of Bhola district where the accident occurred Friday.

Thirty more passengers are believed missing and presumed dead, he said.

"Hopefully, in few hours, we should be able to confirm the exact number of missing (people)," Islam said.

The boat had a capacity of 1,500 but was overcrowded with about 2,000 people who were traveling from the capital, Dhaka, to their homes in Bhola for the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha.

The boat toppled as passengers weighted down one side to disembark, Islam said.

Police and firefighters rushed to aid passengers, many of whom were trapped in the lower deck.

CNN's Harmeet Shah Singh contributed to this report