INS Sumitra carries out anti-piracy operation

INS Sumitra carries out anti-piracy operation

Indian Naval Warship Sumitra has carried out another successful anti-piracy operation off the east coast of Somalia, foiling a piracy attempt on FV Iman. In this operation, fishing vessel Al Naimi and its crew (19 Pakistani nationals) were rescued from 11 Somali pirates.

Indian Navy's indigenous offshore patrol frigate INS Sumitra has been deployed for anti-piracy and maritime security operations east of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden. The warship had received a distress message on 28 January 2024 regarding the hijacking of an Iranian-flagged fishing vessel (FV) Iman, according to which the ship's crew had been taken hostage by pirates. INS Sumitra intercepted the FV following SOP and the onboard crew (17 Iranian nationals) were safely rescued on 29 January 2024. FV has sent Iman on his onward journey after thorough sanitization.

Subsequently, INS Sumitra resumed operations to locate and rescue Al Naimi, another Iranian flagged fishing vessel. This ship and its crew (19 Pakistani nationals) were also taken hostage by pirates. Sumitra intercepted the FV on 29 January 2024 and carried out forceful and quickly effective action against the pirates, forcing the safe release of the crew and vessel. It was also boarded to clean the ship and check the health of the crew held captive by Somali pirates.

INS Sumitra, through prompt, sustained and tireless efforts, in less than 36 hours, rescued two hijacked fishing vessels with 36 crew (17 Iranian and 19 Pakistani) in the Southern Arabian Sea, about 850 NM west of Kochi. These are used in the future as mother ships for acts of piracy against merchant ships while protecting them.

The Indian Navy has once again proven its commitment in the region in taking action against all maritime threats towards ensuring the safety of all seafarers and ships at sea.

Pavita Jones