The National Maritime Search & Rescue Board of India has officially recognized and commended the exemplary efforts of the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) for their unwavering commitment to saving lives at sea. GMB was honored with the prestigious SAR Award 2022-23 during the 21st board meeting of the National Maritime Search and Rescue Board, held on October 12, 2023, in Kolkata. The award was received on behalf of GMB by Capt. Ashwin Solanki, the Chief Nautical Officer of GMB.
Mr. Rajkumar Beniwal, the Chief Operating Officer and Vice Chairman of GMB, expressed his gratitude and pride in GMB’s exceptional performance. He highlighted that even in adverse weather conditions, GMB demonstrated remarkable dedication by assisting ships and their crew members, a testament to their commitment to maritime safety and rescue operations.
GMB recognized for SAR award for their outstanding efforts for saving life at sea. On June 15, 2023, Cyclone ‘Biparjoy’ wreaked havoc in the Gulf of Kutch, putting the lives of many at risk. Among the distressed was MV Hai Nam 81, a vessel carrying 22 Vietnamese crew members. Stranded due to engine failure, the ship was in dire need of assistance.
In the face of this crisis, the Gujarat Maritime Board (GMB) stepped in as a beacon of hope. They swiftly came to the aid of MV Hai Nam 81, ensuring the safety of all aboard. What followed was a remarkable display of coordination and efficiency. GMB worked hand in hand with the Indian Coast Guard (ICG), DG Shipping, Kandla Port, and local government authorities. Their collaborative efforts were not just commendable but also life-saving.
Throughout the operation, GMB kept everyone concerned well-informed. Regular updates were shared, and crucial advisories were provided to the vessel’s Master, ensuring that everyone was on the same page. GMB’s quick thinking and proactive approach were evident as they mobilized tugboats and alerted shore authorities. These preemptive actions played a pivotal role in safeguarding the crew members of MV Hai Nam 81. GMB remained steadfast in their commitment, fulfilling their responsibility until the vessel was out of danger.
But GMB’s heroics didn’t end there. In another daring rescue operation, they assisted in the evacuation of 50 crew members from the Rig ‘Key Singapore.’ This rig was perilously close to the path of Cyclone Biparjoy, adding another layer of urgency to the situation. Once again, GMB took charge, coordinating seamlessly with the Indian Coast Guard. Thanks to their efforts, all 50 crew members were safely evacuated via an ICG helicopter.
In the face of a natural disaster, GMB emerged as a shining example of humanity and solidarity. Their dedication, coupled with their effective coordination with various agencies, ensured the safety of precious lives. This incident stands as a testament to the power of collaboration and proactive measures in the face of adversity. The Gujarat Maritime Board’s unwavering commitment to saving lives has undoubtedly left a lasting impact on all who witnessed their heroic efforts.