About 100 Bangladeshi fishermen are feared drowned after their boats sank during a storm in the Bay of Bengal.
Seamen who managed to return to shore reported seeing at least 10 fishing trawlers founder in the heavy seas, officials said.
Authorities say they cannot mount a search operation until the high winds and waves in the area subside.
Ferry services have been halted and hundreds of people in coastal areas evacuated due to the weather.
Local official Selim Khan told the Associated Press news agency that at least 50 fishermen were rescued by passing boats however, a number were seen to sink.
Lack of communication
Mostafa Chowdhury, a spokesman for a trawler owners' association told the Associated Press news agency that a further 70 boats, with almost 840 crew, had not returned to port.
However, he said that the crews could be waiting the storm out elsewhere as they often sought shelter at offshore islands or mangrove swamps in the area during inclement weather.
The trawlers, which are usually made of wood, rarely have any means to communicate other than via mobile phone, which can only be done close to port.
Bangladesh is frequently hit by cyclones and monsoon floods.
Bangladesh's meteorological department has said that the monsoon driven depression which has caused the bad weather is moving north-north-west and has reached the Indian state of Orissa.