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    Captive sailor's family requests PM to intervene

    Mumbai: The son of the Chief Engineer of the captive ship under Somali pirates Kapil Grewal, has lashed out at the government and demanded immediate intervention from Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

    Captive sailor Bahadur Singh's son, Kapil Grewal, said "Mr Manmohan Singh is the leader of one of the most powerful nations today, and it is time he acts like one. It is not a question of my father, it is a question of several fathers, brother and sons, so treat them as your own family."

    Grewal's father Bahadur Singh, the Chief Engineer of Asphalt Venture is still in Somali pirates' captivity along with six other officers in spite of a ransom payment and the worst is, unlike earlier when they were confined to the ship, now they are at an undisclosed location near Haradhere in Somalia.

    "I had sent a fax to the PMO, External Affairs Minister, Defence Minister, President and the Indian Ambassador to UN so far I have not got a reply, not even a simple e-mail", said Grewal.

    Distressed at the lack of response, the shipping community came out in large numbers last week demanding effective action. Grewal has now knocked on the door of Sonia Gandhi and requested an appointment.

    In the case of MV Iceberg and MV Suez, the government had maintained that all that it can do is put pressure on the ship owner to expedite negotiations, but in the case of Asphalt Venture the ship owner has already paid a ransom and now the ball is firmly in the government's court as to how they will negotiate with the pirates.