Three days after the collision between MSC Chitra, the outbound merchant vessel from Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), and MV Khalijia-III five nautical miles from the Colaba shore, the captain of Chitra sought anticipatory bail.
Captain Mandeleno Ranjit Martin filed the application on Tuesday, saying that the collision was because of navigation error caused by the failure of radio communication.
"There was no error on the Martin’s part; he's been in the industry for 18 years," said his lawyer Rishi Bhuta.
Martin said in the application that there was no point in sending him to police custody as there was nothing to recover from him. "Custody serves no purpose," said Bhuta in the application. "The company [that owns Chitra] itself has faced a loss due to the oil leak."
The Yellow Gate police on Sunday registered a first information report (FIR) against captains of both ships.
Both captains were booked under sections 280 (rash navigation of vessels), 336 (act endangering life or personnel safety of others) and 427 (mischief causing damage) of the Indian Penal Code and sections of the Environment (Protection) Act. If convicted, they face up to three years in jail and fines of up to Rs 5 lakh.
Thirty-three crew members, including two Pakistanis, were rescued after the collision
The anticipatory bail application will come up for hearing on Wednesday.