Maritime body says INS Tabar sunk Thai boat
Indian Navy says INS Tabar sunk the vessel in retaliatory fire after it was first fired upon.
New Delhi: The International Maritime Bureau has claimed that the suspected pirate vessel sunk by the Indian Navy on November 18 in the Gulf of Aden was a Thai fishing trawler.
It said that INS Tabar actually sunk a Thai trawler mistaking it for a pirate ship while on a patrol in the pirate-infested waters off the Somali coast.
Indian Navy has, however, stuck to its guns, saying that INS Tabar sunk the vessel in retaliatory fire after it was first fired upon.
CNN-IBN Defence Correspondent Vishal Thapar reported that Navy's action was legitimate.
"Once they have been attacked they just did that without giving much thought to it. It was just self-defence," Thapar reported.
The fireball that erupted from the vessel after INS Tabar hit it clearly proved that a large amount of ammunition was on board, Indian Navy spokesman Commander Nirad Sinha said.
Vishal Thapar also pointed out that Indian Navy had earlier reported that they saw some pirates roaming on the ship so they couldn't take into account that there might be some innocent people on the ship.
According to Bangkok-based Sirichai Fisheries the vessel sunk belonged to it and was actually Ekawat Nava 5. The company has claimed that one Thai crew member died in the attack while 14 are still missing.
Owner of the trawler Wicharn Sirichaiekawat said that the trawler was in the being hijacked when an exchange of fire with INS Tabar set it ablaze, causing it to sink.