This group tracks the responses of shipping industry towards environmental health concerns, highlights influence of shipping companies from EU, US and Japan etc on IMO and its Marine Environment Protection Committee & South Asian governments. It is keen to restore beaches in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan to their pristine glory for the coming generations. For more information visit:,


Platinum ll Case may Change Indian Vessel Scrapping Rules

The continuing row over the Platinum ll, a ship which arrived with the most tenuous of cover stories when it arrived on the beaches at Alang for scrapping lingers on. Now, despite a Supreme Court order to turn the vessel away the Government have ordered the Gujarat Maritime Board to explain why the vessel was accepted for destruction at the notorious site, one of the sites subject of our report in December, and the case may change the rules for accepting the plethora of passenger liners, cargo and container vessels and bulk and oil tankers which are crashed onto the beaches.

The history of this case has been fully covered in our earlier articles but the problem which has arisen is now touted as one of definition. Despite suspicions that the vessel was polluted by noxious substances, dangerous to anyone dismantling her, and the Supreme Court’s ruling that all toxic materials must be offloaded at their point of origin before shipping to India, the local authorities seemingly designated the vessel as a wreck which relieved it of its status as a viable vessel and therefore was basically subject to salvage.

Now environmental groups are raising the pressure to have all vessels entering Indian waters declare the purpose of their visit prior to anchoring. Currently a ship can arrive uninspected and simply be grounded ashore prior to any formal enquiry into her status or contents. The ship breaking yards in the area of Bhavnagar carry great political clout and it will require an intense and prolonged campaign to regularise the industry.

National code on ship-breaking underway: Ramesh

New Delhi, Mar 15 (PTI) A national code on ship-breaking incorporating safety, health and environmental management issues is underway, the Rajya Sabha was informed today.

Steel ministry is preparing a blueprint in this regard, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said in reply to a query.

He said guidelines to mitigate the environmental impact due to ship-breaking activities have been formulated by the Central Pollution Control Board.

Ship-breaking activities were being carried out as per a Supreme Court order taking into consideration safety, health and environmental aspects.

A Central Technical Committee, which was set up under the chairmanship of environment ministry on the order of the apex court, has given its recommendations covering all aspects of ship-breaking, the minister added.

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