After a merchant vessel from Panama allegedly destroyed an Indian fish boat on Sunday killing two fishermen, a FIR was registered on Monday against the ship’s crew under Section 304 of the Indian Penal Code.
On Monday, a team of officials from several departments began investigating the shipping records and other details of the merchant ship, ‘Amber L’. Officials said 15 departmental officials, including the Directorate General of Shipping, coastal police, immigration, customs, and mercantile department, boarded the Panama Amber L cargo ship to gather evidence. They were taken on two ships to the ship currently anchored 7 nautical miles off the coast of Kochi, authorities said.
Two Indian fishermen were killed and 11 others injured when Amber L allegedly hit the fishing boat Sunday along the Kochi coast. Of the 14 crew members on board, 11 were rescued by fishing boats operating in the vicinity and two bodies were recovered. After the incident, a fisherman has disappeared. Coastal police authorities said a coordinated search and rescue operation by the Indian Navy and the Indian Coast Guard is underway to locate the missing fisherman.
The Navy has launched an Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) from the Naval Air Station, INS Garuda, while the Coast Guard District Headquarters, Kochi immediately launched a Dornier aircraft. INS Kalpeni and a Coast Guard ship have also sailed to locate the missing fisherman. Navy said the NC3I system at the Joint Operations Center (Kochi) and Remote Operating Station (ROS) of Coast Guard having AIS and Radar capability were used to try and identify the merchant ship which was responsible for the collision.
Using these systems, the suspicious merchant vessel MV Amber L was identified as its position at the time of the incident was near to the reported location. A Coast Guard ship with a police team was deployed on Sunday to carry out the primary investigation. The merchant vessel has been ordered not to leave Kochi until the investigation process is complete and its position is being monitored by the Coast Guard’s Remote Operating Station (ROS).
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