HC directive to provide basic amenities to vessel crew

The Kerala High Court has directed the Director General of Shipping and the Mercantile Marine Department to provide basic amenities such as drinking water to the five crew members who are forced to remain on board a dilapidated cargo vessel anchored at Munambam harbour following the refusal by the shipping company to sign them off from the ship.

The court order came on a writ petition filed by N. Thayu Manavar and four other crew members. According to them, though their contract of service with the shipping company was over, it was not allowing them to sign off from the Kochi-registered m.v. Great Sea Vembanad. In fact, they were free to join any ship since their service period with the vessel was completed.

Despite repeated requests, the company had refused their request to complete the sign off procedure. The Director General of Shipping and the Mercantile Marine Department had not responded to their requests positively. As a result, the petitioners were left to stay on board the ship without water and other basic amenities since April. If they left the vessel, they would be accused of being deserters and that would affect their future employment opportunities. The vessel was not in a seaworthy condition and did not have basic amenities.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 9:40:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/hc-directive-to-provide-basic-amenities-to-vessel-crew/article33185785.ece

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