Father of sailor jailed in Greece pleads for his son's return

May 04, 2018, 07:19 IST | Suraj Ojha

Father of jailed sailor has been sending Rs 15,000 to his son who has been imprisoned in Greece since January 2018

Bhupinder Singh
Bhupinder Singh

The five Indians onboard MT Andromeda, a Tanzania-flagged cargo ship, are behind bars in Greece after authorities intercepted the vessel, allegedly bound for Libya, off Crete in January with hundreds of tons of explosives.

Others in the eight-member crew were two Ukrainians and one Albanian, all booked for violating maritime safety laws. The Indians in custody have been identified as Bhupinder Singh, 20, and Jaydeep Thakur from Gurdaspur, Punjab, Satish Kumar from Maharashtra and two others.

Jaydeep Thakur
Jaydeep Thakur

Dream shattered
Singh's father Balkar Chand, a BSF sub-inspector, told mid-day, "It had been my son's dream to join the shipping industry, and he fulfilled it after getting recruited on April 14, 2017. He was promised a salary of $350 a month, but till date hasn't received a single penny.

Gagandeep
Gagandeep

Family in shock
"He was arrested on January 9. I was shocked when I came to know about it as well as the allegation. The coast guard is saying the crew had planned to deliver the explosives to Libya in contravention with the United Nations and European Union embargoes against the country. But my son would never do something like that."

"We are praying to God and pleading with the government to do something and bring my son back home. I have been sending him Rs 15,000 every month since his arrest," he added.

Singh's father Balkar Chand
Singh's father Balkar Chand

Rupesh Gupta, MD of Omega recruitment agency which got Singh the job, said, "Our task is only crew selection; we don't know the type of goods being transported. Yet, I have been running from pillar to post to get them back. I am in constant touch with the Indian embassy there and other agencies."

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