Coast guards rescue 16 fishermen off Lakshadeep

Coast guards rescue 16 fishermen off Lakshadeep

The Indian Coast Guards have rescued 16 crew of a fishing boat stranded by pirates, about 250 nautical miles west off Lakshwadeep islands.

The fishing boat ‘Al Husaini’ had 16 crew members - 13 Iranians and 3 Pakistan nationals. It had sailed from Kanraka/Chahbhar port of Iran on May 16. The boat was captured by Somaliyan pirates off the coast of Socotra and after using it for 25 days, emptying food and fuel, they left the boat stranded in sea.

When the Indian Coast Guards received an alert for assistance, the Merchant vessels sailing nearby were diverted to render help besides sending Coast Guard aircraft from Kochi.

But due to rough weather, Merchant vessels were unable to provide assistance and on June 21, Coast Guard aircraft detected the boat. Coast Guard ship Varuna was then sent for the rescue mission and upon reaching there, boat crew were provided with essential commodities and medicines.

Coast Guard officials said that the boat was being escorted to Kochi by ICGS Varuna amidst prevailing rough weather conditions. The ship is Commanded by Cdr K M Arun Kumar.