Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, May 21, 2002
Logistics - Shipping
War alert to Indian ships
MUMBAI, May 20
THE Government today put all Indian merchant ships on alert, in view of the security environment prevalent in the Arabian Sea.
All Indian ships were directed to report their voyage plans to the Maritime Administration on a 24-hour basis. Vessels would also be required to transmit a position report every day, at a specified time.
The directive was issued by Captain S.S.Naphade, Nautical Advisor to the Government.
The nautical advisor had, earlier in the day, summoned the representatives of the Indian shipping companies to explain to them the details of the directive. The area of applicability (called `inspires area') of the order covers "all the sea area north latitude 30 DEG S in the Indian Ocean including Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal, on the west along the African coast between latitudes 10 DEG 30 MIN S, and 12 DEG N and in the east up to longitude 95 DEG E.''
As per the directive, ships have to inform the authority immediately prior to their departure or immediately after departure from the port within the `inspires' areas or entering the `inspires' areas.
The Mumbai office of the D-G, Shipping shall be the operating authority and "shall coordinate the functioning of the system with maritime operating room, Mumbai.'' The messages will be received by Indian naval communications centres located in Mumbai, Visakhapatnam, said a notification issued by the Nautical advisor.
Under section 411 of the Merchant Shipping Act, the Director-General of Shipping is empowered to deal with passengers or cargoes which are carried by ships licensed under the MS Act to prescribe the rotation of ports; such powers cover routes and cargoes world wide.
Shipping companies said the directives would be communicated to their ships with instructions to masters on board to comply with them with immediate effect.
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