Mumbai: 7 sailors freed by Somali pirates after 4 years return home

  • PTI, Mumbai
  • Updated: Nov 03, 2014 22:20 IST

Seven Indian sailors, who were freed by the Somali pirates after four years in captivity, returned home early on Monday.

The sailors, who were among a group of 16 abducted along with their vessel MV Asphalt Venture off the Somali coast, had been released late last week.

They landed at the Mumbai airport earlier in the day by a flight from Nairobi, sources said.

According to sources, the seven were kept in captivity on land in Africa after the pirates released eight of their colleagues along with the ship three years ago.

Those who arrived in Mumbai include Bahadur Singh (60) and Manjeet Singh (60) from Mumbai, Unnikrishnan Bhaskaran (60) and K George (40) from Kerala, Deniston (27) from Tamil Nadu, and Bhim Singh (40) from Vishakapatnam.

Waters in the Gulf of Aden, a busy sea route, were infested with alleged Somali pirates for a sustained period over the past few years.

MV Asphalt Venture was one of the longest hostage sagas lasting over four years.

In the past two years, international naval forces, with active participation from the Indian Navy, have been patrolling the waters very aggressively, leading to a reduction in piracy incidents.

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