The National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) and Maritime Union of India (MUI) have expressed concern over the ongoing situation of Desh Shanti, which both parties claim has been illegally detained in Iran by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards since 13th August. According to the NUSI and MUI, the allegation of pollution has not been justified and because of the political situation between Iran and India, the seafarers onboard are suffering and not able to discharge their professional duties.
In the meetings of the 30th Asian Seafarers Summit and 23rd Norwegian/ Asian Seafarers’ Committee held in Vladivostok, Russia on 22nd and 23rd August, 2013 a resolution was moved by National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) and Maritime Union of India (MUI) against the detention, which was adopted unanimously by sixteen countries calling on the Governments of India and Iran to resolve the issue immediately.
More than 200 seafarers protested today at the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI). The delegation met Mr B.K. Mandal, Chairman & Managing Director, SCI, and strongly demanded that the SCI and the Government of India should immediately intervene forcefully and ensure the wellbeing of seafarers onboard Desh Shanti. It was also informed that if the issue is not resolved immediately, there will be large scale agitation onboard all SCI ships under the banner of NUSI and MUI.
Mr B.K. Mandal has made assurances that all efforts have been initiated by SCI and the Government of India for the release of the vessel Desh Shanti from Iran. Mr Mandal has also said all the seafarers onboard the ship are safe and the necessary provisions are also available onboard.
NUSI, MUI and Indian seafarers are closely monitoring the situation and have demanded the safe return of seafarers and immediate release of the ship Desh Shanti from Iran as soon as possible.