Free Press Journal

Kin of missing captain of sunken ship meet Sushma Swaraj


AFP PHOTO / Bryan R. Smith

Mumbai: The family members of a Virar-based merchant navy officer, who along with other Indian crew members went missing after their cargo ship sank in the Pacific off the Philippines earlier this month, met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj seeking her help to trace him.

The family members of Rajesh Nair, who was the captain of the cargo ship, met Swaraj in Delhi last Friday, who assured all possible help to trace him.

The Maritime Union of India (MUI) facilitated the meeting between Nair’s kin and Swaraj.

On October 13, the 33,205-tonne cargo ship Emerald Star with 26 Indian nationals on board sank off Okinawa. While 16 Indians were rescued, a search for the missing crew members was launched by Indian missions in the Philippines, Japan and China to locate them.

“Nair’s wife and sister met Swaraj and requested her to help find him. The minister was kind enough to assure extending all sort of support,” Amar Singh Thakur, general secretary of the MUI said.

“Sushmaji was kind enough not only to brief Nair’s aggrieved family members about the various measures taken up by the Indian missions in a few countries, but also assured them to do every bit to trace him,” he added.

Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat was also present on the occasion.

“The kin of the missing seafarers are distraught. Swaraj ji has assured that India will continue its search and rescue mission. She also said that the photos of the missing crew members have been shared with the officials of the neighbouring islands off Japan’s coast near the accident site,” Thakur said.

Nair and his family reside in Virar in neighbouring Palghar district.