Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways

Celebrating exemplary role of Seafarers in Maritime Sector: Weeklong National Maritime Celebrations begins with pinning of the first "Merchant Navy Flag on PM’s lapel

To commemorate the occasion, the flag was pinned on lapel of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi by Shri TK Ramachandran, Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways

Weeklong celebrations being planned by Directorate General of Shipping to commemorate sailing of the first Indian flag vessel "SS Loyalty" on her maiden voyage from Mumbai to London in the year 1919.

61st National Maritime Day Celebrations will be held across the country, spanning major ports

Posted On: 30 MAR 2024 12:55PM by PIB Delhi

Gearing up for a weeklong celebration of National Maritime Day starting April 5, the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, was honored with the 'Merchant Navy Flag,' pinned on his lapel by Shri TK Ramachandran, Secretary of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, in the presence of Shri Shyam Jagannathan, Director General of Shipping, and other senior officials in New Delhi on 29 March 2024. Additionally, a memento was presented to the Prime Minister.

The significance of this celebration lies in honoring the services of seafarers and commemorating a proud moment in India's maritime history. The National Maritime Week, spanning from March 29, 2023, to April 5, 2023, pays tribute to the invaluable contributions of seafarers. It also marks the historic voyage of the first Indian Steamship, "S.S. LOYALTY," of M/s. Scindia Steam Navigation Co. Ltd., Mumbai, which ventured into international waters on her maiden voyage from Mumbai to London (UK) on this day in 1919, now marked as "National Maritime Day."

During his address, Shri TK Ramachandran emphasized the pivotal role Indian seafarers play in sustaining the global supply chain. He reiterated that the National Maritime Week celebrations are a tribute to these unsung heroes of the sea. The gesture of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, proudly wearing the Merchant Navy flag, signals the commencement of this week-long celebration.

National Maritime Day Celebrations will be held across the country, spanning major ports such as Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Kandla, Visakhapatnam, as well as intermediary, minor, and inland water ports in various states and Union Territories. These celebrations serve to highlight the remarkable progress achieved by the Indian Maritime Industry since independence, underscoring its significant contributions to our national GDP.

In recognition of the invaluable service and pivotal role played by our seafarers in advancing shipping and fostering the nation's prosperity, a series of week-long events will be organized. These events include the Merchant Navy Flag Day, seminars, medical camps, blood donation drives, and a poignant Wreath Laying Ceremony to honor the sailors who sacrificed their lives during the first and second world wars.

Central to these celebrations is the Main Function held annually on April 5th. This event serves as a focal point for commemorating the achievements of our maritime industry and paying homage to the courageous sailors who have served our nation with unwavering dedication.

Over the last 9 years, the number of seafarers has increased by 140%. In 2014, the total count of active Indian Seafarers was 117,090 which are 280,000 in 2023. Under the Maritime India Vision 2030, India aspires to emerge as a premier seafaring nation by establishing world-class standards in education, research, and training within the maritime sector. India is a signatory to both the STCW Convention and the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC). Indian seafarers occupy 12% of international seafaring jobs, and the Maritime Vision 2030 recommends that this figure reach 20% by 2030.



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