PORT BLAIR: The iconic passenger ship MV Akbar is set to be decommissioned by the Andaman and Nicobar Administration. The 45-years old ship has been non-serviceable since two years due to regular machinery breakdowns.
As per the officials, the spares for the major and auxiliary machineries of the vintage ship have become obsolete in markets forcing the Andaman Administration to proceed with the decision to decommission the ship despite shortage of ships for operation between Andaman Islands and Mainland India.
“The Directorate has sent the proposal for decommissioning the Ship long back and now a committee have to be constituted, the value and value after sale of the scraps have to assessed, environmental clearance needed are the among many things which is to consider, there is long procedure for decommissioning the Ship,” said Captain Rajinder Kumar, director, Andaman’s Shipping Services.
MV Akbar joined the fleet of Andaman and Nicobar’s Shipping Services during the period of Lt. governor Vakkam Purushotaman. Before that, the Indian relief ship was used to ferry pilgrims between Iraq and Dubai.
Presently, Cochin Shipyard Limited is constructing two passenger vessels for Andaman Island - Mainland Sector, each with a capacity to carry 1,200 passengers and 1,000 tonne cargo, which will be ready by 2020, till then MV Akbar will probably have no replacement.