Rescue of Five Fishermen by INS Sharda
Indian Naval Ship Sharda, based at Kochi, rescued five fishermen at sea who were floating in the water after their fishing vessel, FV Omkaram, sank 35 kilometers North West of Azhikal port, on 04 March 2019. The incident occurred at around 0930 hrs when the ship was on patrol in the area.
An alert lookout sighted a movement in the water, which turned out to be the five floating fishermen. The ship acted with alacrity and immediately altered course towards the survivors. Thereafter the ship lowered its life boats and successfully rescued and brought on board all five fishermen within ten minutes of the initial sighting. Two of the fishermen had sustained minor injuries and were administered first aid by the Ship’s Medical Team. The ship thereafter headed for Kochi to disembark the survivors.
The rescued fishermen have indicated that they had cast off from Cheruvathur in Kasargod at 0400 hrs on 04 March 2019. As per their narrative, water started entering their 13 feet boat, which they were unable to control, and the heavy flooding ultimately caused the boat to sink. The fishermen had to remain afloat without any life saving devices from 0630 hrs till the time they were rescued. They were out of mobile range and were unable to swim or seek help from other boats. The stranded fishermen had removed their clothes to wave at the ship and had almost lost hope of being rescued. All the survivors Manoharan (56) (Boat Owner), Vasav (57), Chandran (60), Suresh (42), Surendran (49) belong to Kanjanghad, Kasargod. The survivors were provided food, water and fresh clothing by the ship’s crew. Efforts are on to inform their next of kin as well as Trikkaripur local coastal police station.
INS Sharda is an offshore Patrol Vessel of the Indian Navy and presently in its 26th year of commission. The ship is actively deployed for coastal surveillance and patrolling off Kerala and Lakshadweep islands and has also undertaken regular anti-piracy deployments in the Gulf of Aden. The ship was earlier involved in rescue of 21 fishermen during Cyclone Ockhi and was also used for distribution of relief material during Op Madad, which was launched by the Southern Naval Command, at the time of the Kerala floods.