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Six Indian sailors, languishing 18 mos. in marooned vessel near Scotland, finally reunited with family

From Mid-day.com:

Over 18 months after being detained at Aberdeen Port in the north east of Scotland, six Indian members of a crew were finally reunited with families, when they arrived in the city late last night. “We counted every day [that we were away]. We knew our ordeal would end someday and that we’d finally be able to return to our country,” said Rahul Sharma, 26, a captive sailor and one of the youngest crew members, after he walked out of the arrival gate of Terminal 2 of Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.

Mid-day had previously reported how the crew was surviving on limited fuel and food, after their company — M/s Gol Offshore Ltd. — went bankrupt.

As per international maritime norms, the vessel couldn’t leave the port without settling its dues. With the vessel detained, the crew was forced to wait it out till process was complete.

Captain Lal Bihari Singh, who is 60 and has been sailing for the last 40 years, said, “In my entire career, I have never come across a situation like this. But, the people in Scotland and officials at International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) were helpful.”

More at Mid-day.com

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