Smooth transition of Indian Navy personnel to Merchant Navy enabled

The MoU signed by Indian Navy and Directorate General of Shipping is expected to benefit retiring Navy personnel to land jobs in Merchant Navy vessels

Post-inking of a memorandum of understanding between the Directorate General of Shipping and the Indian Navy, smooth transition of personnel from the Indian Navy to the Merchant Navy has been made possible. The Directorate General of Shipping, functioning under the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, has subsequently issued an order that details as many as 16 transition schemes for Indian Navy Personnel to the Merchant Navy. These transition schemes have been drawn after a detailed discussion with Indian Navy, the Ministry has revealed.

The 16 schemes will now make it easier for a smooth transition of the retiring Indian Navy personnel to switch over to Merchant Navy after getting hold of necessary certification to work on merchant ships in accordance with the Standards of Training Certification and Watchkeeping Convention of International Maritime Organisation.

MoU seen as significant, as smooth transition is enabled

The new schemes are significant as they cater toward transition of personnel involved in Engine Room work on Naval Ships and also provide option for those working on electrical duties as well as mechanical engine duties. Further, Indian Navy personnel who during their tenure with Navy have reached a certain position but were unable to gain step by step STCW Certification, will be able to make an equivalent transition with minimum bridge courses, sea-service and examination.

The MoU also provides various options to Indian Navy Personnel from NCV Ship to Foreign Going Ships certification. It also enables step by step STCW Certification right from officer in-charge of an engineering branch to second engineer to chief engineer of a merchant ship. This helps when a Naval engineering personnel leaves Indian Navy only after a few years of service. The necessary STCW Certification facilitates smooth transition to Merchant Navy.

Besides the schemes smoothen the process of Mechanical Artificers to become Chief Engineer of merchant ships operating in the near coast area and with propulsion power less than 3000 KW. The MoU also permits Electrical Engineers and Electrical Artificers to become Electro-technical officers of merchant ships with respective bridging courses.

The Ministry has also stated that specialist executive branch officers of the Indian Navy can obtain Certificate of Competency as Officer in charge of navigational watch on ships of 500 gross tonnage or more, Chief Mate and Master (foreign going and near coastal voyages) of Merchant Navy vessels.  An executive branch officer in the Indian Navy will be able to obtain certificate of competency as “Officer in charge of navigational watch on ships of 500 gross.

16 transition schemes enabled

It also helps radio officers of the Navy to obtain certificate of competency as general radio operators of Merchant Navy vessels. The Indian Navy deck sailors can transit to Merchant Navy deck ratings, forming part of a navigational watch. Besides these, Navy Chefs can make their transition as Certified Merchant Navy Cooks. The scheme envisages acceptance of training given by the Navy to its officers and ratings and the sea service experience on Indian Naval or cargo ships on the basis of a certificate issued by the Navy.

The MoU towards implementing these transition schemes was signed by Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi, AVSM, NM, Chief of Personnel, on behalf of Indian Navy, and Amitabh Kumar, Director General of Shipping.

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