Welcome Home: MV Suez Indian sailors reach Delhi

Written by: Abdul Nisar
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New Delhi, Jun 24: Six Indian sailors of MV Suez vessel, which was released by Somali Pirates after ten months in captivity, reached New Delhi airport on Friday, Jun 24.

Indian crew members reached their home country after ten months of captivity. Officials, family members and well wishers welcomed the sailors at Delhi airport.

The 22 crew members including captain Syed Wasi Hasan were boarded to Pakistani Naval vessel PNS Babur after abandoning MV Suez, which had run out of diesel and caught in strong winds.

Crew members, including six Indians, four Pakistanis, one Sri Lankan and 11 Egyptian nationals of MV Suez reached Karachi port on Thursday, Jun 23.

Somali pirates extended the captivity of the sailors after the Egyptian owner of MV Suez refused to pay the huge ransom money. Finally, pirates released the ship after paying a huge ransom - 2 million dollars by Pakistani human rights activist, Ansar Burney.

Pakistan and India were supposed to raise $500,000 and $60,000 respectively, whereas the Egyptian shipping company was said to give $1million. Despite of setting a deadline, India had failed to fulfill its promise.

Stranded MV Suez had hit headlines after a fierce controversy between India and Pakistan. After the initiatives by Pakistani side, Indian Navy on Jun 16 sent its warship INS Godavari, but surprisingly pulled out the warship shortly claiming that Suez refused to contact them. However, sailors on MV Suez claimed that INS Godavari did not make any contact with them.

Pakistani government officials then lodged a complaint to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad accusing Indian warship INS Godavari of brushing Pakistani navy's PNS Babur while escorting MV Suez.

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