Fifteen sailors were on Thursday rescued and a search was on for six other missing crew members who were on board an oil tanker that drifted and ran aground off the Chennai coast in high velocity winds before the landfall of Cyclone Nilam.

“Around 6.30 AM, 15 people who were stranded on board the vessel were safely rescued by the Coast Guard”, Chennai Port Trust officials told PTI.

Search involving the Navy and Coast Guard is on for the missing six persons, the officials said.

The vessel Pratibha Cauvery with 37 crew on board ran aground near Elliott’s Beach in South Chennai, about 200 metres away from the shore.

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