KOLKATA: A team of fishermen — who had braved inclement weather and choppy waters to return to the sea, despite the warnings of an impending storm to rescue six missing fishermen after a trawler had capsized — were awarded the National Maritime Search and Rescue Award.
From Bengal, Das and his team was nominated for the award. As he could not go to Gujarat to receive it due to his ill health, the association secretary, Satinath Patra, received the certificate, trophy and a cash award of Rs 20,000.
Around 1,200 fishing boats from Kakdwip and Namkhana had ventured into the sea when the weathermen sent out a warning early on September 18. As the boats took a U-turn to return, the weather condition deteriorated and the sea turned even more choppy.
While returning, a boat — FB Satyanarayan — developed an engine snag. Soon afterwards, there was a breach in the deck and it began to capsize. The 18 men on board were forced to abandon the boat.
Majhi Ram Das, who was in another boat, FB Krishnanarayan, mid-sea on the way back, contacted the fishermen association to inform them about the capsize. On returning, the association secretary asked Das to lead a team of four fishing boats to rescue the fishermen at sea.