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Sailor stranded in a ship in UK port for 15 months

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An illegal fishing vessel sinking in West Jawa

A sailor, Capt Nikesh Rastogi, has been stranded aboard a ship moored in Norfolk for more than 15 months due to legal dispute….reports Asian Lite News

(Representational image)

Capt Nikesh Rastogi was part of a 13-strong replacement crew for the ship contracted in February 2017.

The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) said 33 crew members had been on and off the vessel since October 2015 and had not been paid.

Capt Rastogi, 43, from Mumbai, said if he were to leave the ship, it would be deemed a derelict.

He said anybody would then be able to take it over.

Capt Rastogi said the ship’s owners fell into liquidation and his employers withdrew from operating the ship in January.

Rastogi remains aboard with three crew members who joined him in September. All of his original crew have returned to India.

He said the four of them had not been paid since last year.

The ITF arrested the ship at Great Yarmouth in November 2016 and secured 688,000 US dollars (£517,045) for the asset’s release to manning agents acting for the Indian Bank ICICI.

The money covered unpaid crew wages, with the last payment made in February 2017, the ITF said.

ITF inspector Paul Keenan said arresting the ship and selling it would raise enough money to pay everyone involved in the wrangle and repatriate the remaining four crew to India.