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India Celebrates National Maritime Week 2024

On March 29, 2024, Prime Minister Narendra Modi was honoured with the ‘Merchant Navy Flag’, pinned on his lapel by Secretary T.K. Ramachandran of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways. This marked the beginning of the National Maritime Week celebrations, which span from March 29 to April 5.

Honouring Seafarers and Maritime History

National Maritime Week is celebrated to honour the services of seafarers and commemorate a proud moment in India’s maritime history. It pays tribute to the invaluable contributions of seafarers.

The week also marks the historic voyage of the first Indian Steamship, “S.S. LOYALTY,” of M/s. Scindia Steam Navigation Co. Ltd., Mumbai, which ventured into international waters on her maiden voyage from Mumbai to London (UK) on this day in 1919, now marked as “National Maritime Day.”

Nationwide Celebrations

National Maritime Day Celebrations will be held across the country, spanning major ports such as Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Kandla, Visakhapatnam, as well as intermediary, minor, and inland water ports in various states and Union Territories.

Highlighting Maritime Industry’s Progress

These celebrations aim to highlight the remarkable progress achieved by the Indian Maritime Industry since independence, underscoring its significant contributions to the national GDP.

Events and Activities

A series of week-long events will be organized to recognize the invaluable service and pivotal role played by seafarers in advancing shipping and fostering the nation’s prosperity. These events include:

  • Merchant Navy Flag Day
  • Seminars
  • Medical camps
  • Blood donation drives
  • Wreath Laying Ceremony to honor sailors who sacrificed their lives during the World Wars

Main Function on April 5th

The Main Function held annually on April 5th serves as the focal point for commemorating the achievements of the maritime industry and paying homage to the courageous sailors who have served the nation with unwavering dedication.

Growth of Indian Seafarers

Over the last 9 years, the number of seafarers has increased by 140%. In 2014, the total count of active Indian Seafarers was 117,090, which increased to 280,000 in 2023.

Maritime India Vision 2030

Under the Maritime India Vision 2030, India aspires to emerge as a premier seafaring nation by establishing world-class standards in education, research, and training within the maritime sector. India is a signatory to the STCW Convention and the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC). Indian seafarers occupy 12% of international seafaring jobs, and the Maritime Vision 2030 recommends that this figure reach 20% by 2030.

The National Maritime Week celebrations highlight India’s rich maritime heritage and the significant contributions of seafarers to the nation’s economic growth and global trade.

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