Margao: Some members of Goa Seafarers’ Association of India (GSAI) recently called on the Deputy Chief Minister Chandrakant ‘Babu’ Kavlekar, and placed before him several problems that they face.
They have sought relief to the seafarers who have been ‘barred’ for five years, for submitting fake SSC certificates to obtain Indian Continuous Discharge Certificate (CDC).
GSAI president Franklin D’Costa in a letter to Kavlekar has listed six issues the seafarers are facing in the state, and sought his help to resolve them.
“We request the Ministry of Shipping, government of India, government of Goa and Director General of Shipping to kindly pardon the seafarers, by reducing the punishment from five years to one year,” said D’Costa.
He has also raised the issue of the closure of the NUSI Wockhardt Hospital at Panzarconi, Cuncolim.
The association has asked to seek details about the lease agreement between the Sociedade de Agricol Cuncolim Communidade and the hospital management.
In the absence of a hospital facility, request was also made to provide health checkups to retired seamen and widows twice a week at the soon-to-be-inaugurated new South Goa District Hospital at Fatorda, Margao.
Request was also made to collect data on seafarers to keep a track of them.
“We have requested the government to collect data on seafarers and maintain a record of those exiting the country and coming back from voyage. This will help to track the seafarers in case of an accident at sea or if one goes missing. The online registration should have all the details of the company, agency in India, and all the important contacts of the seafarers at home, head office and at sea and also to have the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), which is the rule book of the company where all related matters such as pay scale, sick pay, compensation and retirement plan are found mentioned,” said D’Costa.
The association also called for a meeting with the NRI director and NRI commissioner regarding scrutinising the new pension form. Under the Goa Welfare Pension Scheme, 82 application forms were approved but are still pending due to some technical issues.
The seafarers’ cell at Matanhy Saldanha building is also in need of a computer, landline telephone, printer, xerox machine, chairs as well as a nodal officer, said