The Indian Embassy in Cairo will send its consular officer to A Whale, the Liberian-flagged mechanical tanker which has been stranded at the Egyptian Port of Suez for the past five months with a 23-member crew, including 21 Indians, on Sunday. Talking to ‘Express’ from Cairo, Navdeep Suri, the Indian ambassador to Egypt, confirmed that the requisite approvals in this regard have been taken and the consular officer will visit the vessel on Sunday.
The ‘Express’ had earlier reported on the sufferings endured by the crew, without wages, proper food, shelter and communication systems. “We have obtained necessary permission from the authorities concerned to visit the ship. The issue was brought to our notice only a couple of days back. The Indian Embassy is always ready to render help to Indians and we always take preemptive actions to protect the Indians here,” Suri said.
The Embassy officials emphasised that they have been engaged in the task of helping the stranded crew from the moment they came to know about the issue. The Indian Embassy in Singapore is also part of the effort and is exerting diplomatic pressure on the shipping company to pay the wages due to the employees.