On Monday, India’s Kerala high court ordered the seizure of a Russian vessel MV MAIA-I, owing to non-payment of fuel-related charges amounting to almost Rs 1.87 crore to an Estonian firm. As the ship is loaded with arms meant to be delivered to India’s Navy based in Kochi, the court has permitted the unloading of the cargo even when it is in detention.
TX Harry of Kochi’s Karuvelippady filed the admiralty suit. He is the power of attorney holder of Estonia-based Bunker Partner OU. The claim for payment is for the value of bunkers supplied to the vessel. Bunkering indicates the supply of fuels for use by vessels. It includes the logistics of loading and distributing fuel among the shipboard tanks available.
The ship is expected to be detained till the amount due to the petitioner is deposited or until the ship owner gives the security for the amount to the court’s satisfaction.