Operation to Salvage a Sunken Vessel, ‘Ocean Blessing,’ off Tannirbhavi Shore Begins after 29 Years

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Operation to Salvage a Sunken Vessel, ‘Ocean Blessing,’ off Tannirbhavi Shore Begins after 29 Years

Mangaluru: The operation to salvage a sunken vessel, ‘Ocean Blessing,’ has begun off the Tannirbhavi shore. It is learnt that a private company in the business of ship breaking had imported the ship. However, due to heavy rain and gales, it sank, and the owners abandoned the vessel but had allegedly taken the containers. Mangalore Port authorities had issued permission for the beaching of the ship in 1993, but due to some customs issues, the matter had reached the courts.

Mohammed Kabeer Krishnapura, proprietor KK Enterprises, Surathkal, that has currently launched the salvage operations, after they won a contract to clear the wreck in 2017 through an e-auction, speaking to media said, “There were litigations with regard to the vessel. It was a Panama Flag vessel, and through an e-auction in Singapore, a company had bought it for breaking, but it sank due to heavy rain, off the Mangaluru coast. After the issue reached various courts, and based on a court order, we got permission to carry out the salvage operations, following which works were launched, after obtaining permission from the local administration, port, customs, Coast Guard and other departments,”.

The shipwreck is about 600 meters off the Tannirbhavi shore, and a barge from Sea Bird, Goa, arrived with equipment in January 2022. “Work-related to understanding the vessel’s position, that is crucial to conduct the salvage operation, is in progress. Surveys have already been launched. Another barge crane is expected to arrive next week, and we have got two seasons to complete the operation. By 2023, we are confident of completing the work. This season, the work will be taken up till May 15. During the monsoon, the works cannot be undertaken, and will resume from October onwards,” said Kabeer to the media.

File Photo

He said that the entire operation is underwater, and nearly 30 people, including labourers, cutters and divers are currently involved in the work, which is being carried out between 7 am to 5 pm every day. “The main work will begin only next week. It is a challenging job,” Kabeer added.


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