The Indian Coast Guard today successfully escorted Bangladeshi fishing boat ‘Allahar Dar’ with 20 Bangladeshi fishermen on board to the Bangladeshi Coast Guard at the India-Bangladesh International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) in the Bay of Bengal.
In tweet the Indian High Commission in Dhaka announced, “The ICG ship Sarojini Naidu undertook successful repatriation of one Bangladeshi fishing boat ‘AllaharDaan’ along with 20 Bangladeshi fishermen at INDO-Bangladesh IMBL. Boat and crew members formally handed over Bangladesh Coast Guard Ship Shadhin Bangla.”
The High Commission further added that, “‘Allahar Dan’ had been at sea due to engine breakdown & was sighted off the Indian coast by Indian fishermen who provided succour to the crew & towed them safely to Paradip on 26 December 2021.”
According to reports in Bangladesh, 20 fishermen aboard the Allahar Dar had set out for fishing in the Bay of Bengal by a boat on December 7 from the Bangladesh coast. Around December 11, the boat developed technical snag in the engine. Adding to their misfortune, the batteries of their walkie-talkie and mobile phones got drained without any power back-up, disconnecting their communication with the outside world.
In a stroke of immense luck On December 26, local fishermen sighted the directionless boat off the Odisha coast and subsequently, the Odisha fishermen towed their vessel with two mechanized boats to the Paradip fishing harbour. The Indian Coast Guard with the Marine Police at Paradip provided shelter to the boat and its crew on humanitarian grounds.
In a statement the Indian Coast Guard said, “The incident highlights the importance given by Indian fishermen to help mariners or fishermen at sea in distress, irrespective of nationality, thereby forming an important link in ensuring safety of life at sea.”
The incident has also highlighted the coordinated response between the Indian and Bangladeshi Coast Guards allowing for the rescue as well as safe repatriation of citizens in distress. The Indian High Commission in Dhaka said, “Coordinated response between Coast Guard agencies of India and Bangladesh for safe repatriation of the boat highlights mutual commitment for safety of fishermen at sea, further strengthening the bilateral relationship between two countries.”