A ferry overloaded with people heading to a memorial for three drowned boaters capsized on Friday in the Arabian Sea off southern Pakistan (search), killing about 60 people, officials said.

Five people who managed to swim to shore notified authorities, said Mohammed Ali Shah, chairman of the Fisher Folk Forum (search), a charity that works for the welfare of fishermen and their families.

The accident occurred near the remote coastal town of Kharo Chao, about 110 miles southeast of the port city of Karachi (search), navy Lt. Cmdr. Salman Ali said.

Ali said about 60 people drowned and that rescue teams searching for their bodies had recovered 23 of them. Shah, however, said as many as 80 people may have been on board the ferry when it sank.

"Divers from the Pakistan navy are looking for the bodies, but so far we only know that about 60 people have drowned," Ali said.

The victims were going to a remote coastal town to express their condolences to relatives of three people who died earlier this week in a separate boat accident, Shah said.