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Maritime News

Malayali sailor goes missing in South China Sea

Four days after an Indian sailor went missing from a ship sailing in South China Sea, his parents in Kerala are waiting for a message that all is well. Roshan Mathew, 23, son of Cherian of Ottaplackal House in Manarcadu near Kottyam,had gone missing from a ship in South China Sea near Hong Kong since October 31. Roshan was working as a third officer in MV TS Japan, a ship owned by Synergy Maritime Pvt Ltd.

The ship had started from Shekou Port in China and was heading towards Laem Chabang Port in Thailand. Synergy Maritime has its Indian office in Chennai while its corporate office is in Japan. According to the information provided by the shipping company to Roshan's parents, Hong Kong coast guard conducted search operation with aircraft and other ships in the sea to locate the missing sailor but did not succeed.

"Now I have very little hope that my son would be alive. May be he would have been saved by some fishing boats," Roshan's father Cherian Mathew told TOI on Thursday. "Lot of fishing boats, both big and small, throng the sea near Hong Kong. Usually, if they rescue someone from sea, they would leave him only once they reach a port. That may take two to three weeks," Cherian said. Cherian cited an incident when his friend's son was rescued by a fishing boat and dropped in a remote village in Sri Lanka after three weeks. "The boy had to make a phone call from there to his parents to inform that he was alive," he said hoping that something similar would happen in his son's case also.

Roshan had joined the ship only 15 days back. The company officials in Chennai informed Cherian that Roshan was on duty till 4pm October 31 (Monday) and was expected to get back to duty at 8pm and search operations were on since he was not found.

Since the news of the mishap spread in Kottayam, local residents were trying their best to help the distressed family.They have alerted the authorities about the situation. "We have sent a letter to chief minister Oommen Chandy and Union Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Vayalar Ravi. We have also contacted Union defence minister A K Antony," said Babu K Kora, president, Manaracadu panchayath. The representatives of the shipping company had also visited Roshan's parents to apprise them about the turn of events.

Date: November 5, 2011                                                                        Source : Indiatimes

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