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Indians rescued by Navy from hijacked ship in Arabian Sea chant 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai' | Watch

A Liberian-flagged bulk carrier with around 15 Indian crew members, was hijacked by around five-six armed hijackers in the Arabian Sea. The Indian Navy Marine Commandos launched a security operation on Friday and rescued all crew members.

Shashwat Bhandari Edited By: Shashwat Bhandari @ShashBhandari New Delhi Published on: January 06, 2024 18:28 IST
Indian Navy monitors the maritime security situation in
Image Source : PTI Indian Navy monitors the maritime security situation in North/ Central Arabian Sea and Gulf of Aden. (Representational image)

All Indians, who were part of the 21-member crew onboard vessel MV Lila Norfolk that was hijacked off Somalia coast in North Arabian Sea on Friday, thanked the Indian Navy and chanted 'Bharat Mata Ki' after they were rescued.

In their first reaction, members of the Indian crew said, "...they were trapped for the past 24 hours... relieved after Indian Navy came... I'm proud of you...  Bharat Mata Ki Jai..." (24 ghante se band hai... Indian Navy aane ke baad humko thoda rahat mila hai... Indian Navy, I'm proud of you... Bharat Mata Ki Jai."

All 21 crew, including 15 Indians, were safely evacuated by the Indian Navy Marine Commandos on Friday.

How Indian Navy Marine Commandos rescued crew on hijacked ship in Arabian Sea? 

Indian Navy's elite marine commandos rescued all 21 crew members including 15 Indians from a bulk carrier after boarding it from a warship in a swift operation in the North Arabian Sea that followed after around five to six armed pirates attempted to hijack the Liberian-flagged vessel.

The Navy deployed a warship, maritime patrol aircraft P-8I, helicopters and MQ9B Predator drones to assist the vessel MV Lila Norfolk after it sent a message on the UK Maritime Trade Operations portal, saying unknown armed personnel had boarded it on Thursday evening.

Indian Navy spokesperson Commander Vivek Madhwal said frontline warship INS Chennai intercepted the cargo vessel at 3:15 pm and that MARCOs commandos "sanitised" it.

All the crew members were hiding in a safe room on the vessel since last evening when the pirates boarded the cargo ship, it is learnt.

"All 21 crew including 15 Indians onboard the vessel were safely evacuated from the citadel," Madhwal said.

"Sanitisation by MARCOs commandos has confirmed the absence of the hijackers. The attempt of hijacking by the pirates was probably abandoned with the forceful warning by Indian Navy's maritime patrol aircraft of interception by naval warship," he said.

The official said Indian ship INS Chennai is in the vicinity of MV Lila Norfolk and it is rendering support to restore the power generation and propulsion in the vessel besides assisting her commence voyage to next port of call.

After receiving the message about the attempted hijacking of MV Lila Norfolk, the Navy diverted INS Chennai from her anti-piracy patrol to assist the vessel.

The vessel was kept under continuous surveillance using maritime patrol aircraft P8I and Predator MQ9B drones before the commandos entered it.

"The Indian Navy's marine commandos present onboard the mission deployed warship boarded the merchant vessel and have carried out the sanitisation operation," Madhwal said.

The attempted hijacking comes amid growing concerns over Houthi militants stepping up attacks on merchant vessels in the Red Sea amid the Israel-Hamas conflict. Navy Chief Admiral R Hari Kumar issued instructions to firmly deal with such maritime incidents.

With inputs from PTI

ALSO READ | MARCOs conduct rescue ops on hijacked ship in Arabian sea | Who are Indian Navy's elite commandos?


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