The second batch of sixteen Indian sailors stranded in Chinese waters for
more than four months will return home on February 14 following a crew change
on their vessel, minister of state for ports and shipping Mansukh Mandaviya
said on Wednesday 10 Feb 21.
Last week, Chinese authorities had agreed to India’s request to permit a
crew change on the merchant vessel MV Anastasia, which was in anchorage near
Caofeidian port since September 20.
“Great start of the day! Our stranded seafarers of MV Anastasia are coming
back to India!” Mandaviya said in a tweet.
“The crew will sign off from Japan today and will reach India on 14th Feb.
And soon will be reunited with their families!” he added.
Sailors were coming
home due to the efforts of the Indian embassy in Beijing and the ministry
The minister said the sailors were coming home due to the efforts of the
Indian embassy in Beijing and the ministry. A total of 39 Indian seafarers were
stranded on two merchant vessels off Chinese ports for months because of the
trade row between China and Australia. Both ships were carrying Australian
coal, which they weren’t allowed to unload by Chinese authorities.
Twenty-three sailors stranded on MV Jag Anand, which was at anchorage near
Jingtang port since June 13 last year, returned home in January after Chinese
authorities allowed a crew change at a Japanese port.
had outlined detailed steps for a crew change
External affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said last week
that Chinese central authorities had given clearance for the transfer of the
crew of MV Anastasia after sustained follow-up by the Indian embassy in
had repeatedly taken up the issue of the stranded sailors with China over the
past few months. Chinese authorities had outlined detailed steps for a crew change
in view of the country’s strict pandemic control and prevention measures, and
insisted the shipping companies would have to comply with them.