We expect assistance will be provided in urgent, practical, time-bound manner,' said MEA on Indian sailors stranded on 2 ships in Chinese waters
The Ministry of External Affairs on Friday released statement on the status of two stranded Indian vessels – MV Jag Anand & MV Anastasia – that are on anchorage in China. The ministry in the statement said,"...given growing stress on crew members and our concern for increasingly difficult conditions for them, these two cases are being pursued vigorously."
"Our Embassy in Beijing has repeatedly taken up these cases both with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and also the local provincial authorities, requesting that the ships be allowed to dock and/or the crew be allowed to be changed," MEA said in a statement.
"We expect assistance will be provided in urgent, practical, time-bound manner," said MEA.
It also said that Indian Ambassador has personally taken up this issue with China's Vice Foreign Minister. "Ministry is following this issue with Chinese Embassy. Chinese authorities have conveyed that on account of COVID related restrictions, crew change isn't being permitted from these ports," it further added.
Two cargo vessels- MV Anastasia and MV Jag Anand- with 39 Indians on board have been on anchorage in Chinese waters as they were not allowed to unload their cargo though some other ships have managed to do so.
China on December 25 had said that there is no 'link' between stranded Indian ship crew on its Chinese ports and its strained relations with India and Australia.
The statement had come a day after the External Affairs Ministry had said that the cargo vessels have been on anchorage in Chinese waters as they were not allowed to unload their cargo.
"There is a considerable amount of stress on the crew members on account of this unprecedented situation," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava had said.
Srivastava said bulk cargo vessel MV Jag Anand is on anchorage near Jingtang port in Hebei province of China since June 13 and it has 23 Indian sailors.
Another vessel, MV Anastasia with 16 Indian nationals as its crew, is on anchorage near Caofeidian port in China since September 20, waiting for discharge of its cargo, he had said at a media briefing.
"Our Embassy in Beijing has been in constant touch with provincial and central government authorities in China, requesting that the ships be allowed to dock and/or the crew be allowed to be changed," he had said.