Port Blair, March 1: Coast Guard Ship C-145 and Aruna Asaf Ali in a precise and crisp operation rescued 108 precious human lives during an operation which lasted night of      28 Feb and early hours of 01 Mar from high seas.  The operation was initially launched, in response of panic calls requesting CG assistance raised by           M/s Punj Lloyd, Mumbai complaining illegal entry by some unknown people onboard barge Gunpati, which was being towed from Myanmar to Mumbai.

Tug Star Jakarta which was towing unmanned barge Ganpati from Myanmar to Mumbai reported illegal entry of about 15 people onboard barge Ganpati and presence of some boats in vicinity on 28 Feb 13 at 1620 hrs.  On receipt of the information, Interceptor Boat C-145 under the command of Comdt(JG) SR Nagendrgan was pressed into action and ship sailed out within    30 minutes from Diglipur.  The ship intercepted Tug Star Jakarta at 2100 hrs and embarked Coast Guard Boarding Team onboard barge Ganpati.

After boarding the vessel, it was found that barge had 108 Myanmarese who were at sea since 15 Feb 13 and had no food & water for past 07 days. Condition of the personnel was critical due to severe dehydration & starvation and required immediate medical aid & evacuation.  It was also reported that  

one 03 year old boy had expired on 28 Feb 13 and was given burial at sea by Myanmarese.  Considering urgency of rescuing large number of people,        ICGS Aruna Asaf Ali under the command of Comdt MS Gill, operating 175 nm away, was also directed to rush for rendering assistance.  The officers and men of CG ships C-145 and Aruna Asaf Ali battled rough seas during overnight operation and successfully rescued 108 Myanmarese from barge Ganpati.  The rescued Myanmarese were provided much needed food, water and first Aid by Coast Guard ships.

Considering seriousness of the situation, all nodes of the Coast Guard were put on to higher state of preparedness throughout the night.  The Operations team at Regional Headquarters and District Headquarters of Coast Guard effectively coordinated for accomplishment of the mission.  All the rescued personnel were brought to Diglipur and handed over to local police for providing further medical aid.  While disembarking from CG ships, rescued Myanmarese thanked CG personnel for their humanitarian assistance and offered prayers to almighty to grant his blessings to all.

A communiqué received from Commandant SSN Bajpai, Chief Staff Officer (Operations) of the Coast Guard.