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Indian Coast Guard Rescues Distressed Sri Lankan Fishing Trawler

In a collaborative effort with the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) in Colombo, the Indian Coast Guard successfully rescued a local fishing trawler in distress. The troubled vessel, facing engine malfunction while navigating in northern waters approximately 91 kilometers away from Point Pedro, was adrift and drifting towards Indian territory.

The local fishing trawler ‘Kalpani’ (Reg No. IMUL-A-2473 GLE), with 06 fishermen aboard, had departed from the Cod Bay Fisheries Harbour, Trincomalee on 22nd March 2024 for a fishing voyage. Concerns arose when the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DFAR) reported to MRCC Colombo on 01st April that the trawler had lost communication since 28th March, prompting a search operation.

After activating its VMS distress alarm due to engine failure, the distressed trawler was found within the Indian Search and Rescue Region (SRR). MRCC Colombo informed MRCC Chennai, which directed an Indian Coast Guard craft patrolling nearby to assist. The Indian Coast Guard located the distressed trawler and arranged for its towage to Sri Lankan shores by SLFV Sadewmi (IMUL-A-0820MTR), another local fishing trawler.

During inspection on 05th April, it was discovered that a fisherman aboard the ‘Kalpani’ had fallen ill. The Indian Coast Guard swiftly airlifted the sick fisherman to the ex-Rela Hospital in Chrompet, Chennai, India, for urgent medical treatment. This development was communicated to the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources by MRCC Colombo, while the Sri Lankan Navy remained vigilant over the towed trawler.

In collaboration with MRCC Colombo, the Navy continues its readiness to aid distressed maritime and fishing communities, extending its commitment beyond Sri Lanka’s SRR to encompass neighboring SRRs.

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