The Union Shipping Minister of India has assured the Maritime Union of India (MUI) that the Indian seafarers will be supplied the COVID-19 vaccines on a priority basis.
Amar Singh Thakur, General Secretary of the MUI said that he met the shipping minister in New Delhi and requested to prioritize the supply of COVID vaccines to Indian seafarers.
Currently, sea routes are responsible for about 90% of global trade. Ever since the lockdown inflicted by the pandemic outbreak in India, “Indian seafarers have relentlessly worked aboard cargo ships worldwide to serve our nation for maintaining the regular supply of merchandise, including essential items like food, fuel, and medicines”, he said.
The MUI’s prime focus is going to be the protection of health and welfare of Indian seafarers’, said Thakur.
“To enable Indian seafarers to work tirelessly aboard cargo ships and continue their service to our nation in the post-pandemic phase, it is absolutely necessary to get them administered COVID-19 vaccine doses at the earliest possible. This is why, vaccines should be made available to them on a priority basis at the earliest,” he added.
The MUI plans to obtain the COVID vaccines, with the support of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways of India, for their members from the manufacturers based in India on a priority basis. To strengthen India’s fight against this global pandemic, the MUI and its Trusts have donated Rs 25 lakh to PM Cares Fund.