600 Indian Crew Stage Peaceful Protest On Cruise Ship

Jun 10, 2020

About 600 Indian crew members stranded on the cruise ship Marella Explorer staged a peaceful protest today demanding their government to allow them to return home. The crew stuck on the cruise ships since the Covid-19 pandemic started, have not received repatriation approval by the Indian government to this day. Therefore they decided to stage a protest on the open deck to rise awareness and ask for their rights. The Indian crew say that the cruise company had already arranged flights to India but all of them were canceled.

These are very tough times for all of the crew who are confinement for a long period of time, and has a negative effect on the crew's mental health, causing stress, anxiety, and depression. This is weighting tough on the Indian crew members knowing they are among the last to return home while their fellow crewmember from other nations already reached home weeks ago.

“We are been stuck onboard from the past 3 months. The company arrange chartered flight for reparation but the government of India is not helping us. People are stress if someone will do something wrong with their life who will be responsible for it? The company, the Indian government, or are family. The company is very good caring for us onboard with all facility but it's been 3 months onboard whats the problem with are government .all other company flights arrive in India with all Indians nationality seafarers.” Said one crew member onboard Marella Explorer.

Indian crew members are also facing the same repatriation problem on other cruise lines as well. Today we received a message from an Indian crew member stranded on Costa Cruises ship, who said:

I am massaging from the cruise ship Costa Venezia ( Indian crew) Please help us to return home as soon as possible because we waiting from the month of April but still not yet confirmed when we will go to our destination.(India).every 3 days management planned changes what could we do we don't understand. We came in manila 30th April then to disembark Philippine crew members. They take almost more than 1 month .after that they make plans for us to divide crew members to another ship. Then the same day they again make changes to plan now we are sailing to China. They are saying for India they don't have any flights. But other ships people are going from manila but we cannot so pls help us out from this problem we want to go home.