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Gujarat on alert for vessel with Toxic Material ‘heading to Alang’ ship breaking yard

The internationally renowned ship breaking yard in Gujarat coast Alang and all the ports in the region have been put on High Alert following the possible movement of a ship carrying hazardous waste to the area in the next few days after it was turned down entry into a Bangladesh port a month ago.

The authorities in Gujarat are on the lookout for a floating storage and offloading tanker, Jesslyn Natuna, which is said to contain hazardous waste and is headed for the Alang ship-breaking yard in Gujarat for being dismantled

GMB officials also said they have been alerted about this ship four months ago and have been maintaining a strict vigil.

.“The Gujarat police have sent us a letter asking us to circulate among our members not to buy this ship. It does not seem like anyone has bought this vessel,”a spokesman of Ship Recycling Industries Association.

 The vessel renamed as “J Nat” “contains 1,500 tonnes of hazardous materials”

Toxics Link, an Indian environmental and research advocacy organisation, sent an email stating that the vessel renamed as “J Nat” “contains 1,500 tonnes of hazardous materials” such as residue oils, PCBs (Polychlorinated Biphenyls), mercury and asbestos is on the move along the west coast of the country.

The enforcement agencies of the central government and the Coast Guard have also been inquiring about this vessel. No such vessel has come to Alang or is scheduled to arrive in the next few days. There are no firm reports and no ship-breaker has declared about it, according to sources in the Gujarat Maritime board which owns most of the private ports in the Gujarat coast. They have in fact been alerted about this ship four months ago and have been maintaining a strict vigil since then.

The ship operated in the Natuna gas field and owned by Indonesian company

The mail from the NGO states that the ship was operated in the Natuna gas field and was owned by Indonesian company. It was sold to the current owner SOMAP International Pte Ltd, a Singapore-based company, which has renamed the vessel as “J Nat”. It also stated that the GMB was alerted in May 2020 about the possible arrival of the ship at Alang, after Bangladesh halted its import. 

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