National » Kerala

Updated: March 2, 2012 00:03 IST

Two drown, 3 missing as ship rams fishing boat

Staff Reporter
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Michael (55) of Johny Bhavan, Mekkad in Panmana near Chavara, one of the two survivors at the Alappuzha Medical College Hospital on Thursday. Photo:Special Arrangement.
Michael (55) of Johny Bhavan, Mekkad in Panmana near Chavara, one of the two survivors at the Alappuzha Medical College Hospital on Thursday. Photo:Special Arrangement.

Two fishermen drowned and three have gone missing when a ship rammed their fishing vessel off the Thottapally coast around 2 a.m. on Thursday. Two fishermen on the boat were rescued and brought to the Thottapally harbour near Alappuzha by 7 a.m. All the seven on board the fishing vessel are natives of Kollam.

Kollam Collector P.G. Thomas, overseeing rescue operations at Thottapally, said that two fishermen, Xavier and Justin, were brought dead to the harbour. The bodies have been handed over to the relatives after post-mortem examinations at the Alappuzha medical college hospital.

The two fishermen who were rescued, Michael and Joseph, have been admitted to the Alappuzha medical college hospital. The Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard, and local fishermen are engaged in search operations to find the missing fishermen, Santosh and Bernard of Pallithottam in Kollam city and Cletus of Puthenthura, near Chavara.

The fishing boat, Don-1, is owned by Dominic Antony from Tangasseri in Kollam city. The boat had left the Neendakara fishing harbour here on February 26 and was to have returned on Saturday. Reports reaching here said the boat capsized after being rammed by the ship. As the ship rammed the boat, those on the deck got thrown into the waters. According to the two who survived, the boat was lying anchored in a fishing ground at sea and the fishermen were engaged in casting the net when the ship hit the boat.

According to fishermen on other boats nearby, lights on the ship went out soon after the incident and it soon disappeared. They alleged that the ship was sailing much east of the usual shipping channel. The Coast Guard office in Kochi, when contacted, said efforts were on to locate the ship.

Xavier and Justin were natives of Kovilthottam in Chavara. Chief Minister Oommen Chandy called on the family of the deceased at their houses in the evening to offer his condolences. When the bodies were brought to the houses in the afternoon, Labour Minister Shibu Baby John, who is also Chavara MLA, and the Fisheries Minister K. Babu paid their last respects to the fishermen and offered their condolences.

The tragedy comes 16 days after two fishermen on a mechanised fishing boat were shot dead by the marines on the Italian vessel Enrica Lexie off the Ambalapuzha coast, near Thottapally, allegedly suspecting them to be pirates.

Labour Minister Shibu Baby John and Fisheries Minister K. Babu paying their last respects to fisherman Xavier who got drowned when a ship rammed his fishing boat.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on his arrival Kovilthottam in Chavara to pay his last respects to fisherman Xavier who got drowned when a ship rammed his fishing boat.

We need proper GPS tracking system is installed for ships in international ship way. Central Gvnt needs to take imitative for protecting this costal area. Indian navy also can play good role.So its our responsibility to make sure these types of disaster should not happened again

from:  Sujith Puliyanam
Posted on: Mar 2, 2012 at 09:34 IST

Obviously these incidents reminds the need for disciplined movement of ships through our territorial waters off Kerala coast under the austere surveillance of Coast Guard so as to ensure cosseted fishing activity of our fishing boats. Let the current incident that killed two fishermen be a revelation for empowering our Coast Guard so as to not only ensure protection for safe fishing in the Indian EEZ but also for concurrently establishing India’s legitimate sovereignty in the zone. It is a challenge to our Marine Enforcement officials to handle the plight of fishermen who will have a fear psychosis while venturing into the sea. This fresh tragedy which took place a fortnight after the shooting from an Italian tanker that killed two fishermen will intensify the prevailing tension in the fishing harbours and coastal settlements in Kerala.

from:  Madan Menon Thottasseri.Chennai
Posted on: Mar 2, 2012 at 09:20 IST

The government cant provide every fishermen with communication equipment. Indian fishermen in the first place have no sense of responsibility. Incidents like this will increase, if fishermen from India stop straying away from their usual route. We dont even have basic system of log book, which can be easily maintained in every fishing hamlet and fishing harbours across India.

Obstructing the waterways, even if its within Indian territorial waters is an offence and will prove dearly. Fishermen should also be directed not to adopt greedy ways of fishing, which will lead to disasters. Waterways are for navigation as a priority and fishing should be done with safety in mind.

from:  SKA
Posted on: Mar 1, 2012 at 19:24 IST

They get murdered in the seas every day,by all sorts of people and in all sorts of methods possible.Our farmers are dying of hunger and by
suicide.Our fisher men are getting watery grave every where,For a change the cricket and film fans in this country should talk about these in every forum setting aside their love for films and cricket.
1st march

from:  doodu
Posted on: Mar 1, 2012 at 19:19 IST

It's very sad. First it was the murder of two Indian fishermen at the hands of Italians and now a high seas collition killing two more. In both the cases the guilty must be punished so that such incidents do not occure in future. The government should also provide the fishermen with modern warning and GPS systems.

from:  remesh
Posted on: Mar 1, 2012 at 17:21 IST

Though it's a tragic incident. Ship should be tracked and guilty to be
punished. Our Fishermen can also not just behave like sitting duck in
the high sea.. They should upgrade their fishing boats with hi-tech
alarms and GPS systems, this is quite a norm in other part of the world.

from:  Bangalorean
Posted on: Mar 1, 2012 at 10:59 IST
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