India celebrates National Maritime Day every year on the 5th of April to remember its navy men and their tireless efforts to transport essential commodities across the globe.
The life of seafarers is full of challenges as they spend months on the ship to ensure the economy of the country remains steady. Without them, intercontinental commerce and the economy would come to a standstill.
Here’s what you need to know about National Maritime Day!
The history of National Maritime Day
While we all know when our online orders are ‘shipped’, only a few know that Indian shipping started on the 5th of April 1919. The first ship was SS Loyalty which sailed to the UK from Mumbai. To mark this special event, National Maritime Day is celebrated every year on this day.
In 1959, India also became a member of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO). The primary motto of IMO is to protect maritime and curb pollution from ships.
The first National Maritime Day was celebrated for the first time on the 5th of April, 1964.
India has now more than 43 shipping companies with more than 1401 ships in their ownership.
Besides this historical significance, National Maritime Day is also observed to support the global economy and the well-organised and seamless transportation of goods from one part to another of the world.
National Maritime Day Awards
An award ceremony is also held on this special day to honour those who contributed significantly to this sector. They are rewarded with Varuna Award for their contribution. They receive a statue of Varuna and a scroll as a part of the award.
Similarly, the NMD award of excellence is also conferred to senior-level members for their lifetime contribution to the maritime sector. The awardees get a trophy and citation.
Individuals responsible for maritime training and education are also given the Outstanding Contribution to Maritime Education and Training award.
National Maritime Day 2022 Theme
The 5th of April 2022 is the 59th National Maritime Day and the theme of this year is Sustainable Shipping beyond COVID-19.
Besides facilitating the country’s economic growth, the maritime sector also played a vital role in bringing the stranded citizens back to India safely from different parts of the world during the COVID-19 induced lockdown.
In a nutshell, National Maritime Day offers a great opportunity for citizens to acknowledge the country’s contributions to the maritime sector.
Did you know Indian Navy is ranked as the 7th most powerful navy globally? Do you have any maritime friends, family or relatives? Comment below!