At least five people were killed and 15 others injured in an explosion onboard Sagar Bhushan, a drill vessel at Cochin Shipyard Ltd.
The explosion occurred on Monday when the ship owned by Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) was undergoing repairment work at Cochin Shipyard.
The police officials and fire tenders rushed to the spot immediately and were trying to douse the fire.
The number of causalities could go up as some of the injured were in critical condition. All the injured have been shifted to a nearby hospital while efforts were on to rescue two more people trapped inside the burning ship.
The fire was under control after Naval fire tenders were pressed into service.
Union Minister of Shipping & Water Resources Nitin Gadkari has directed MD Cochin Shipyard to provide all medical support to victims and initiate an inquiry into the incident.