Acquisition of Two 500 passenger-cum-150 ton cargo vessels for inter-island sector for the Andaman & Nicobar Administration

The Cabinet has approved the proposal of Andaman and Nicobar (A&N) Administration for acquisition of 2 Nos. 500 Pax-cum-150 Ton Cargo Vessels at a cost of Rs.391.34 crore for providing Inter-Island shipping services to meet the increased passenger traffic requirements of people of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. Shipping is the lifeline of the people of the Island.

The islands are spread over 700 Kms and Inter-Island sector consist of ships originating from Port Blair to far flung Southern group of islands terminating at Campbell Bay Island. Out of four vessels for inter-island sector, two vessels, namely M.V. Chowra and M.V. Sentinel have outlived their economic life in 2004 and 2002 respectively. Another vessel M.V. Dering built in 1992 is also due for de-commissioning. With the de¬commissioning of these vessels which are running in their extended life span, the capacity will be reduced substantially and to maintain the present level of service, acquisition of two more vessels is imperative.

There has been demand from the Islanders for providing adequate number of passenger ships for their transportation needs to access better education and health care facilities which shall be catered to through these two vessels.

01 March 2012