Indian Naval forces are on January 6 investigating suspected vessels in the North Arabian Sea to track down the pirates involved in an attempt to hijack a merchant vessel with 21 crew members including 15 Indians, officials said.
The Indian Navy thwarted the attempted hijacking of Liberian-flagged vessel MV Lila Norfolk and rescued all its crew members on January 5. The crew of the bulk carrier are now engaged in restoring the propulsion system, power supply and steering gear of the platform, the Navy said. “Thereafter, MV Lila Norfolk will recommence her passage to her destination under escort of the Indian naval warship,” it said.
The Navy deployed a warship, maritime patrol aircraft P-8I, helicopters and and MQ9B Predator drones to assist the vessel, after it sent a message on the U.K. Maritime Trade Operations portal, saying unknown armed personnel had boarded it on Jan. 4 evening.
On Friday, Indian Navy’s elite marine commandos rescued all 21 crew members of the commercial vessel after boarding it from frontline warship INS Chennai. The Navy came out with a statement detailing its response to the hijacking attempt.