Berth No 6 offshore platform at Pointe-a-Pierre where five divers were sucked into a 30-inch diameter pipeline, on 25th February 2022. (Image by RISHI RAGOONATH)
RADHICA DE SILVA
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Vanessa Kussie, the wife of missing diver Rishi Nagessar says pumping of a 30-inch diameter pipeline is continuing today to retrieve the corpse of her dead husband.

Speaking to Guardian Media, Kussie said she received an update from the company on Wednesday.

“They told me they are pumping the pipeline slowly so his body will remain intact. I am thankful for that,” Kussie said.

She added, “They also told me they are still taking out oil from the line. They are pumping the line but not fast. They’re pumping cautiously and I appreciate everything they are doing. I am just waiting to get closure.”

Meanwhile, Nagessar’s elder brother, Rajesh Beharry, said he was trying to cope with the tragedy.

“It is hard for me dealing with this. They are still looking for the body. I am seeing about many different things and it really hard,” Beharry said.

“They have sent in an RV into the pipeline, but they still have not seen anything as yet,” he added.

Guardian Media sent an email to Paria Fuel Trading Company on Wednesday asking for an update on the recovery efforts but there has been no response as yet.

Nagessar and four other divers—Fyzal Kurban, Yusuff Henry, Christopher Boodram and Kazim Ali Jr—were conducting maintenance works on a 30-inch diameter seabed crude oil pipeline at Berth No 6, Pointe-a-Pierre on February 25th, when they were sucked into the pipeline.

Two hours later, Boodram was pulled out of the pipeline by another diver.

He had been saved by Kurban, a diver with 30 years’ experience, who managed to push him along the line so he could get out. Kurban died along with the other divers.

Kurban’s father Ramjohn Kurban had perished on 17th October 1985, when an offshore platform in that same area erupted in flames. Despite this, Kurban became a certified commercial diver, working in several parts of the world and training dozens of other divers. Some of these divers had been willing to enter the pipeline when the men became stuck on Friday afternoon.

The reason that the divers were pulled into a vortex created inside the pipeline is now the subject of an investigation. Boodram’s relatives said he remains traumatised and is still warded at a private hospital.

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This is a developing story and Guardian Media will update it as information comes to hand.