Stranded 'Iron Monger' crew seeks help from Indian mission - The New Indian Express

Stranded 'Iron Monger' crew seeks help from Indian mission

Published: 08th July 2013 08:58 AM

Last Updated: 08th July 2013 08:58 AM

The crew of the Liberian-flagged vessel ‘MT Iron Monger 3’, which has remained stranded off Dubai for the last six months, on Sunday encountered the most gruelling phase of their mid-sea ordeal with the power systems onboard the ship collapsing after the fuel reserves ran out.

And it were the four Indians -- Smigin Subrahmanian, Sreejith S Kumar, Joshy and Ali --  among the stranded vessel’s crew who had radioed the Indian mission in Dubai on Saturday seeking emergency help. The  pointed out that they had found out from the crew of other vessels managed by the Nos Shipping Company that there’s enough fuel on board these vessels as they carry cargo.

“We cannot sustain in the ship because of the hot climate, which is around 45 degrees. Our food is getting spoiled due to the blackout. We are totally tired and undergoing terrible mental depression.”

“We request you to please take some major action to settle the issue. Hoping for an immediate assistance,” the SoS said. Speaking to Express,  Sreejith said that the total blackout had made it virtually impossible for the crew to remain onboard.

“We have been in talks with the officials to find an immediate solution to the issue. Now, we need fuel to survive onboard.”

“The food which was kept frozen for some time is damaged. With the blackout, the machines have stopped working.  Talks have been going on for sometime now. But so far there’s no major positive development. Now, the number of crew has come down to 11 after a crew member was sent back following throat infection last week,” he pointed out.

‘Iron Monger’, managed by Nos Shipping Company Singapore, has been stranded off Dubai port for the last six months. However, the company has not paid wages to the 12 crew members.  Though the crew had taken up the matter with the authorities, it did not yield any results.

Meanwhile, Sreejith’s  brother-in-law Remesh Gopi, who is based here, approached Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy on Sunday. “The crew were recruited by NOS Ship Management, which has a liaison office in Kochi and Indian HQ in Mumbai, and by Pontus Ship Marine Consultancy, Mumbai.  Both these companies have not taken responsibility.  “NOS authority furnished a fake mail at the Ernakulam North Police station to claim their innocence,” Remesh said.

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