Tuesday 15 October 2019

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Economy | Fishing

Coast Guard officials to face 304 & court martial

 

The Commanding Officer as well as the navigator the Coast Guard ship ICGS Vaibhav will have to face charges of culpable homicide as well as court martial, following dismissal of the Coast Guard official in the hit and run case of a fishing trawler in Goa.

Six fishermen died in the accident that occurred on 25 April at dawn as the IGCS Vaibhav hit the fishing trawler, breaking it into two pieces.

Chief minister Manohar Parrikar told the Assembly today that the state government would provide all the legal help, including a government lawyer, to fight the case and seek justice.

The probe in the case is presently being conducted by the Yellow Gate of Mumbai police, in whose jurisdiction of international waters this accident occurred.

“If we investigate and go the court, our case will be dismissed as Goa does not have jurisdiction beyond 12 nautical miles”, Parrikar told independent MLA Vijay Sardesai

He was demanding that the Coast Guard navigator be booked for murder case by Goa police.

The accident occurred 13.5 nautical miles off Goa coast, near Canacona, killing six fishermen while 23 could be rescued after five-hour long floating in the deep sea.

Besides the Board of Inquiry by the Coast Guard that would be followed by court martial as well as the Yellow Gate police probe, Parrikar said the case is also being investigated by marine mercantile division of the Directorate General of Shipping in Mumbai.

Parrikar also announced compensation of Rs two lakh each to the families of the victims from Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.

In addition, he said, the Coast Guard has announced Rs one lakh each while the families would also get damages and compensation through the court.

In reply to opposition leader Pratapsing Rane’s question, Parrikar informed that the fishermen would also get benefits of group insurance.

Velim MLA Benjamin Silva, also a trawler owner, demanded several other facilities also be given to the fishing crew, mostly from Orissa, who are scared after this accident.

Regarding the accident, Parrikar said the Coast Guard officials have given justifications like lights on the trawler had been put off while the radar also could not catch the signals due to white horse in the water.

Silva however dismissed it, stating that lights on the trawlers come automatically in the dark.

“Even otherwise, it was a full moon night and a ship was visible”, said Parrikar.

He also informed that coincidentally both the ships – the fishing trawler as well as the ICGS Vaibhav – were on trial.

Defense minister A K Antony was supposed to commission the hi-tech rescue vehicle on 11 May. 






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