Seafarers are facing abandonment, stranding, detention, arrest, and seizure at various ports, particularly in Iran, UAE, and Malaysia.

Indian Seafarers are found stranded or abandoned without their wages being settled, and lacking essential provisions such as fresh water and basic necessities on board the vessel, according to reports from the country’s directorate general of shipping.

‘Deceitful practices’ by certain Indian registered recruitment and placement of seafarers (RPS) agencies have been observed, during the recruitment process of Indian seafarers, posing significant risks to their well-being and rights, the directorate warns.

Although the recruitment and placement service provider must ensure that any incident is reported to the director-general as soon as possible, and no later than twenty-four hours after receiving such information, it has come to directorate’s attention that the incidents are not being reported within the stipulated timeframe.

Furthermore, whenever any reports or documents are requested, the necessary documentation is often ‘incomplete or not provided at all’.

For this purpose, the directorate has developed a “Google Form” for RPSL companies and shipping companies to submit details of all seafarers currently working in or scheduled to join vessels in Iran, UAE, or Malaysia.

All the RPSL and shipping companies are required to provide these details as specified in the form, in accordance with the directorate.  

As it is reported, in case of non-compliance, the directorate will take appropriate and stringent action against the respective shipping and RPSL companies. 

Meanwhile, the directorate has launched the e-Migrate system for the recruitment of Indian seafarers to address challenges faced by Indian seafarers placed on foreign-flagged vessels by unlicensed RPS agencies.

This system regulates and monitors recruitment, ensuring transparency and adherence to regulations.