Indian Coast Guard rescues 28 crew of merchant ship near Mumbai

     The Indian Coast Guard has rescued a merchant vessel that was in distress on the high seas off the country's western coast, thus saving 28 crewmembers, including six foreigners. Narendra Visfote, Public Relations Officer, Ministry of Defence disclosed this in Mumbai on Monday. He said that the UK registered vessel M.V Khalijia-3, fully loaded with 30,000 ton steel coils, was sailing to Mumbai from China and had requested for assistance. "Indian Coast Guard received a rescue call from Messrs Quadrant Maritime Private Limited at about 8:50 p.m. yesterday that their vessel M.V Khalijia-3 is having excessive flooding and requested for assistance. The Coast Guard regional headquarters operation center promptly initiated the actions to render assistance," said Visfote. The Coast Guard's fast patrol craft Subhadra Kumari Chauhan was immediately sent with adequate repair facilities, submersible pumps and divers to extend help to the ship in distress, he said. "On arrival, the Coast Guard ship went along side the merchant vessel and evacuated all 28 crews which included six foreigners in a daring act during the dark hours in rough sea and heavy rains," said Visfote. A helicopter has also been sent to the location to stop the oil leakage from the vessel. "Chetak helicopter is also looking after the same thing and a team is also there now and they are seeing that some oil leakage that has happened and they are taking all types of precautions," added Visfote. The rescue operation lasted for six hours. The incident took place about six nautical miles from Mumbai Port.

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