HIJACKING OF VESSELS BY PIRATES
Seven incidents of hijacking of vessels on high seas by pirates have been reported during the last three years. One hijacking incident of Merchant Vessel – Lila Norfolk. 21 crew were present including 15 Indian nationals onboard on January 04-05, 2024. Further, two hijacking incidents occurred involving Fishing Vessel – IMAN (January 28, 2024) & Fishing Vessel – AI Naeemi (January 29, 2024) which did not have any Indian crew onboard.
Indian Navy has been proactively engaging with the regional and extra-regional navies/ maritime forces, to promote maritime security. Since 2008, Indian Navy has deployed units in Gulf of Aden and East Coast of Africa towards antipiracy patrols. A total of 3,440 ships and over 25,000 seafarers have been safely escorted. For restoring maritime security in the region, enhanced presence of ships, aerial surveillance by maritime patrol aircraft / remotely piloted aircraft in the Central Arabian Sea and Off East of Coast of Somalia is being undertaken by Indian Navy. Information is also exchanged with national and international maritime security agencies for early response in a coordinated manner, effective liaison & coordination with DG (Shipping) for inputs on Indian crew onboard Merchant vessels plying in Arabian Sea and Gulf of Aden / adjoining region. In addition, interrogation of fishing vessels/ dhows operating in the region is also being undertaken by Indian Navy for maintaining maritime security in the region.
Indian Navy has enhanced presence of ships, aerial surveillance by maritime patrol aircraft/remotely piloted aircraft in the central Arabian Sea and Off East of Coast of Somalia towards restoring maritime security in the region. Nil piracy incidents have been reported in Palk Strait.
This information was given by Raksha Rajya Mantri Shri Ajay Bhatt in a written reply to Shri A Ganeshamurthi in the Lok Sabha today.