First 'Monsoon Maritime Lectures Cum Conversations' Held
The first 'Monsoon Maritime Lecture cum Conversations' of 2018, which also marked the occasion of the Silver Jubilee of the series was presented by Cdr Mohan Narayan (Retd) at the Captain Mahendranath Mulla Auditorium on 14 June 2018. The theme of the lecture was the ‘Bombay Dock Explosions’.
The talk detailed actual reasons for the devastating incident which took place on 14 April 1944, when SS Fort Stikine went up in flames as a result of two explosions. There was colossal loss to life and property and confusion prevailed as people attempted to flee the city. The reasons for these blasts, which were just thirty-four minutes apart, can be tracked back to negligence in unloading high explosive ammunition and other inflammable cargo. The talk also highlighted individual acts of courage, resilience and stoicism in adversity among other aspects of the ‘Spirit of Mumbai’.
Cdr Mohan Narayan, IN (Retd) was commissioned into the Indian Navy on 01 Jul 1978. A Communication and Electronic Warfare specialist, he has held a number of staff appointments, both afloat and ashore. Cdr Narayan has had the privilege of being the longest serving Curator of IN Maritime History Society (MHS) and under his watch, various seminars, heritage walks, field researches and lectures took place - eighteen of the twenty publications that are the pride of MHS, were brought out with him as Curator. He was part of the team that set up the Maritime Heritage Exhibition (MARHEX) during the International Fleet Review 2001 and also curated MARHEX as part of the President’s Fleet Review 2011. Maritime history activities like establishing the maritime museum onboard Vikrant, memorial in honour of Naval Uprising 1946 at Cooperage and then at Ballard Bunder Museum, were set up and established under his tutelage. Cdr Mohan Narayan continues to remain actively engaged in his pursuit and promotion of maritime history and heritage to this day, after relinquishing charge of MHS in 2015.