New Delhi: To mark the 'Day of the Seafarer', leading maritime bodies on Thursday said they are transporting 734 Indian seafarers through chartered flights from Mumbai and New Delhi to Doha and back on Thursday.
The bodies MASSA and FOSMA have already announced that they have joined hands to transport about 4,000 Indian seafarers till June 30 in chartered flights as a non-profit mission to enable crew change across the globe.
On June 25 on the 'Day of the Seafarer', the Maritime Association of Shipowners Shipmanagers and Agents (MASSA) and The Foreign Ship-owners Representatives and Ship Managers Association (FOSMA) said they will transport 734 Indian seafarers through chartered flights from Mumbai and New Delhi to Doha (Qatar) and back on Thursday.
MASSA CEO Capt Shiv Halbe told PTI: "We believe this is the largest movement of seafarers serving on cargo ships in a single day and it is indeed an historic occasion for Indian ship manning sector."
Halbe said a total 424 Indian seafarers will board two outgoing flights each from Mumbai and New Delhi to Doha to enable them to join cargo ships across the globe.
The return flights to India will transport 310 Indian seafarers. "Also, 100 Indian citizens will travel in these flights to Mumbai and New Delhi free of cost from Doha as per the list of passengers submitted to us by the Embassy of India in Doha. It will be our CSR (corporate social responsibility) initiative on 'Day of the Seafarer'. We will not charge any money to transport these stranded Indian passengers back home," added Halbe.
MASSA and FOSMA pointed out that crew change across the globe has become extremely crucial considering the fatigue amongst huge number of stranded seafarers on foreign vessels since the lockdown in India.
Indian seafarers who will back home would be subjected to mandatory quarantine of 14 days. Most Indian ship manning companies have booked rooms for seafarers' quarantine in 5 star deluxe hotels of Mumbai and New Delhi at a bargain tariff of as low as Rs 4,000 per day per seafarer, the bodies said.
June 25 is celebrated as the �Day of the Seafarer', recognising the invaluable contribution seafarers make to international trade and the world economy.