Indian divers searching this submarine which sank after exploding at the Mumbai port on Tuesday night have yet to find the 18 crewmen believed to be aboard the vessel.
Almost zero visibility, limited space and the equipment moved by the blast have hampered rescue operations. India’s navy chief told the country to “prepare for the worst”.
The incident marred celebrations for India’s 67th independence day.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh paid tribute to the sailors on the INS Sindurakshak submarine who he said were feared dead aboard the Russian built vessel. It had recently undergone a multimillion euro upgrade.
He added that it was even more painful in light of the navy’s recent successes, with the launch of a home-built submarine.