Indian authorities are facing difficulty in retrieving the body of American adventurer and Christian missionary, John Allen Chau, who was reportedly killed by an endangered tribe, the Sentinelese, in the Andaman and Nicobar islands. Chau traveled to the forbidden North Sentinel Island in the Bay of Bengal to try to convert the island’s residents to Christianity.
As per reports, the Islanders shot Chau with arrows and then buried his body on a beach on North Sentinel Island. The Indian authorities accompanied by the fishermen who reported seeing Chau’s body last week, went near the island on Friday and Saturday to figure out a way to recover the body, reported BBC.
Dependra Pathak, a top police official in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, said they have mapped the entire area with the help of the fishermen but they have not yet spotted John Allen Chau’s body yet.
Pathak said the police group spotted several Sentinelese tribe members with bows and arrows in their hands walking around the area where the fishermen said they saw Chau’s body being dragged and buried.
“The mission was done from a distance to avoid any potential conflict with the tribe’s people as it’s a sensitive zone,” he said. “We are discussing with anthropologists and psychologists about the nature of the Sentinelese.”
The Sentinelese is known to have a decades-long history of repelling outsiders. The tribe has lived in complete isolation on the remote North Sentinel Island, which is part of India’s Andaman and Nicobar Islands territory, for tens of thousands of years. The island is roughly as large as Manhattan. India has protected the island and its people for decades to prevent them from contracting modern illnesses and to keep outsiders alive. According to India’s census estimates from 2011, at least 15 Sentinelese could be living on the island.