Filipino found dead in coal ship at Thoothukudi Port, suicide suspected

Kim, who had worked on June 18, failed to return to duty on June 19.
The captain opened Kim’s cabin using a spare key and found the latter dead, sources said.
The captain opened Kim’s cabin using a spare key and found the latter dead, sources said.(Representative image)

THOOTHUKUDI: In a suspected case of suicide, a 31-year-old Philippines national was found dead inside a coal vessel stationed off the Thoothukudi VOC Port here on Wednesday. The deceased, identified as seafarer Sinamben Kim, was found dead inside his cabin in the vessel.

According to sources, vessel STAR LAURA, a bulk carrier sailing under the flag of Marshall Islands, ferried coal cargo to Thoothukudi VOC port on June 17, and was stationed at the outer harbour. It had set sail from Philippines on June 5 carrying crew of 22 seafarers.

Kim, who had worked on June 18, failed to return to duty on June 19. Following this, the captain opened Kim’s cabin using a spare key and found the latter dead, sources said.

Preliminary investigation revealed that Kim’s Facebook account had been hacked and he took the extreme step in fear of confidential information leak. Subsequently, Coastal Security Group (CSG) officials led by DSP Pradhapan shifted the body to Thoothukudi government medical college hospital.

An FIR has been registered by the Tharuvaikulam Marine police and further investigation is under way. Orders have been issued to halt the vessel until the investigation gets over, DSP Pradhapan said.

(Assistance for those having suicidal thoughts is available on TN’s health helpline 104 and Sneha’s suicide prevention helpline 044-24640050)

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