An Indian Master, Capt Sukhvinder Bhamra, was sailing onboard the MSC Vanessa when he received an email from Mr Abdul Gani Serang of the National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) on the hardships faced by Mr Aman Sharma, recently released from captivity as part of the MV Albedo crew.
The Master and his crew started to collect money amongst the crew members of the ship. When he signed off, Capt Bhamra called Mr Sharma and informed him that he will try to collect about INR100,000 (USD1,650) from his ship's crew and will help him in the coming days. Mr Sharma has since received the first of this support: INR30,000 (USD500).
MPHRP would like to sincerely thank Captain Bhamra and his crew for their heartfelt and generous donations.
Capt Bhamra had this to say when MPHRP contacted him personally to thank him for the huge contribution for Aman Sharma (Capt Bhamra also provided the photograph for this article of Team MSC Vanessa who, in his words, “generously donated towards the noble cause of supporting a fellow seafarers in the time of need”): “It is sad that our fellow seafarers worldwide are either lacking support from their local governments, Seafarer unions or other Social organisations OR the help is extended after a great deal of delays. At times the delay is to such an extent that the help, when it finally arrives, is of little or no significance at all.
“Like in the case of Mr. Aman, we sincerely appreciate the kind gesture of various institutions who have come forward to provide financial aid; a simple offer of a temporary shore job would have been more appropriate in maintaining his honour and dignity. The question is what about his fellow seafarer who lost his life while in captivity, and his family which must be living in devastation and undergoing severe hardships.
“It is good to know and see that your organisation is doing a good job in supporting our fellow seafarers and is the voice of seafarers in distress. I wish you all the best in your endeavour and assure you of our continued support.”