The merchant fleet with an all-female crew sets sail

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Sailing towards the International Women in Maritime Day, 2022, which is celebrated on May 18, a fleet of female Merchant Officers set sail for the high seas on Saturday aboard Mt Swarna Godavari.

Hosted by Navratna National Shipping Company, Shipping Corporation of India Ltd (SCI), the flag handover ceremony was honored by the Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture, Meenakshi Lekhi. While Director General of the Directorate General of Shipping, Amitabh Kumar, IRS was the guest of honor, and other dignitaries were from the Japanese Consulate.

Departing from the city’s Jawahar Dweep Oil Terminal, Mt Swarna Godavari is the second vessel with an all-female fleet. The trend of female empowerment was started by SCI last year when mt Swarna Krishna left JNPT for Vadinar. The freighter was manned by an all-female crew, a first in world maritime history.

Speaking on the occasion, Minister Lekhi said Indian women have always been at the forefront in all areas of progress and now constitute 48% of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) graduates ). However, the extremely low share of women in the maritime industry represents huge room for improvement. “The Center continually encourages empowered women to take the lead in various progressive initiatives for the benefit of society,” she said.

While the Consul General of Japan, Dr Fukahori remarked, “During this trip, SCI and the Government of India have shown exemplary leadership on a global front and have made us all proud.

SCI CMD HK Joshi urged all female seafarers to inspire at least five other aspiring women to join a maritime career, thereby achieving multiple growth in female participation. “This initiative aims to encourage and progressively demonstrate the power of women in the maritime industry, which will only increase in the years to come,” she said.

Later, Minister Lekhi presented a silver plaque to the Captain of Mount Swarna Godavari in recognition of the valor and bravery of the fleet to begin the exhilarating journey.

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Posted: Sunday May 15th 2022, 00:08 IST

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