A coastal sailing vessel, on its way from Thoothukudi to the Maldives, submerged off the Kanniyakumari coast due to inclement weather. The incident took place Wednesday.
When Annai Velankanni Arockiya Vennila, the vessel, set sail from Thoothukudi to the Maldives with about 287 tonnes of vegetables, cement, and other materials, and nine seamen, it experienced rough weather even when it was approximately 250 nautical miles off the coast of the island nation.
As the journey became life-threatening with hostile winds hitting the vessel, the vessel master decided to head back to Thoothukudi.
Around 4.30 pm, when the vessel was about 130 nautical miles off Kanniyakumari on Tuesday, water seeped into the engine room compelling the crew members to inform the vessel owner. The latter then warned the Indian Coast Guard (ICG). The office-bearers of the Coastal Sailing Vessel Association informed a member of Parliament, who requested Union Government officials to start rescue operations right away.
The officials got in touch with a cargo ship that happened to be crossing the site in the early hours of Wednesday. The crew members could be rescued, but the vessel was not salvaged.