Tuesday, January 3, 2012

CHENNAI: Drifted S Korean vessel back in earlier location


By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on January 3, 2012:
CHENNAI: The Chennai Port Trust (ChPT) management on Monday successfully moved a drifted South Korean- flagged vessel to its earlier location.
M K Sinha, Deputy Conservator of ChPT, told Express, “After a two-day operation, two tugs belonging to the Port Trust management on Monday evening restored the vessel (OSM Arena) in to its original location inside the port area.” 

It may be noted that the detained vessel OSM Arena, anchored off the Chennai Port with a 14-member crew for the past 22 months following a Kolkata High Court order, drifted towards the shore near INS Adyar in the wee hours of Friday due to gusty wind and rough seas.
According to sources, the vessel is now anchored 3.5 nautical miles from shoreline.
Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan on Sunday made a surprise visit to the port and along with top officials of the ChPT, including its chairman Atulya Misra monitored the operation from a small boat. For the last three days, the drifted vessel has become a tourist attraction for many and people were thronging Marina to get a view of the cargo vessel.
As rough sea condition improved on Saturday, the port management began an operation to restore the drifted vessel back to its original location. Sources said, 14 Burmese crew on board the vessel are in sound health and no damage has occurred to the vessel.

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