Hong Kong Vessel Causes Flutter at Kolkata Dock

Kolkata, Mar 25 (PTI) A container vessel from Hong Kong caused a flutter when it arrived at the city dock of the Kolkata Port Trust (KoPT) here on Wednesday, as apprehension grew after some of its crew members were reportedly spotted without safety gear, officials said.

The vessel -- XING PING -- arrived at the Netaji Subhas Dock (NSD) Berth 3.

"It was reported that some of the Chinese crew in the vessel were without gloves," INTTUC-backed National Union of Waterfront Workmanship (I) general secretary Asim Sutradhar told PTI.

He claimed that KoPT's mooring workers, too, did not have adequate number of gloves.

"The vessel was allowed entry as it might have stock of masks and medical supplies... but we demand proper steps for the safety of the workers," Sutradhar said.

The port must ensure proper supply of protective gear like masks, sanitisers and soaps, he added.

KoPT Chairman Vinit Kumar, however, said vessels have to obtain clearance from the port's health officials before arriving.

"Our doctors check every person on board each vessel. We provide adequate number of gloves, masks and sanitisers to our staff at the field level," Kumar said.

The Kolkata Dock System (KDS) comprises three docks - Netaji Subhas Dock (NSD) with 10 berths, Kidderpore Dock (KPD) with 18 berths and Budge Budge (BB) Jetties with six berths.

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