Compensation for X press pearl from Sri Lanka -India clarifies!

India denies the reports that suggest the Government of India has demanded compensation/damages from the Government of Sri Lanka towards the assistance provided during the fire incidents onboard MT New Diamond and MV Xpress Pearl in September 2020 and May June 2021. Issuing a statement Indian High Commission of Colombo says they come across those reports and they are completely false and incorrect.

The statement further says that the Government of India immediately deployed ships of the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) in response to specific requests from Sri Lanka Navy for providing expeditious assistance to fight the fire incidents onboard MT New Diamond and MV Xpress Pearl. Rescue operations conducted by these ships were instrumental in curtailing the hazardous effects of the two fire incidents and thereby limiting the damage to the maritime and marine environment of Sri Lanka.

In line with the ‘Polluter Pay Principle’ as per international norms, we have raised a claim for deployment, salvage activities, and items/stores undertaken by these ships. The government of Sri Lanka has been requested to join our claims with that of the Sri Lankan side in the respective forum. It is emphasized that the request has been for presenting these claims to the Insurer/Owner for settlement and reimbursing the compensation received through established channels.

It is reiterated that India has not demanded any damages/compensation from the Government of Sri Lanka and the Government of India’s immediate deployment of ships is in line with the ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy and Security And Growth for All (S.A.G.A.R) doctrine.

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