Indian warship sunk during 'day at sea' for military families
Smoke rises from a ship inside the naval dockyard in Mumbai on Monday.
February 1st, 2011
02:54 PM ET

Indian warship sunk during 'day at sea' for military families

The heavily armed Indian navy frigate was equipped to do battle with enemy battleships and submarines, but it went up in flames as soon as it was hit … not by a torpedo or enemy vessel, mind you, but by a merchant ship.

The sinking of the INS Vindhyagiri, a 3,000-ton warship, marked the worst-ever peacetime loss for the Indian navy, Indian Express reported, adding that it’s also pretty embarrassing.

The warship was returning from a “day at sea” for families of sailors and officers and was entering the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust off the coast of Mumbai on Sunday afternoon, the website said.

Video taken by a passenger aboard the INS Vindhyagiri caught the collision as it unfolded. Those aboard the navy ship can be seen scurrying nervously as the merchant vessel approaches the frigate.

The Cyprus-flagged MV Nordlake, which was leaving the harbor, narrowly missed another container vessel, the MV Sea Eagle, and as it turned to avoid the Sea Eagle, it slammed into the frigate.

The collision cracked the warship's hull near the waterline. Water rushed in, and a fire broke out in the engine room, the Indian Express reported.

The Mumbai Mirror reported that the Navy attempted to put out the blaze, but the added water served only to sink the ship faster.

The ship was towed into the harbor, but it sank Monday afternoon. Police said they planned to arrest the Nordlake’s captain, according to the Indian Express.

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Filed under: India • Military
soundoff (388 Responses)
  1. Cesar

    No. I deleted my chips, and ate my cookies.

    February 2, 2011 at 6:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Cesar

    So anyway, a computer programmer walks into a a bar and

    February 2, 2011 at 6:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • really???

      Yeah, what.

      February 2, 2011 at 7:04 pm | Report abuse |
  3. really???

    All I can say is that you people have a lot of interesting comments!!! (Not that that's a good thing)

    February 2, 2011 at 7:02 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Johnboy


    February 2, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kiril

      [Be a good testimony. During the day, hohescmool. Don't be out at the gym, or out to lunch, or shopping at the mall] I am obviously behind on blogging. But, I think this is lousy advise. I don't stay indoors. Marissa only does "school" about 3 hours a day. Some of the time she does her school day in the evening or on weekends or at times the public school is on holiday. Why, we even do school during the summer. After academics are finished, the rest of the day is used trying to prepare her for life. When I am teaching my daughter menu planning, budgeting and family and consumer sciences, we go to the grocery store. We go to the library weekly and often run errands at the same time because learning to plan our day so that we are not wasting gas is a life skill. Marissa goes out and mows lawn (or shovels the sidewalk) too. And, yes, we occassionally go to the mall. Marissa earns an allowance and has to learn how to budget her money. She is responsible for purchasing all of her own clothes. It is ridiculous to think that I am going to hide out in my home and wait until after 3 PM just because I am trying to mimic or live by the public schools calendar. Learning need not occur only on Monday through Friday, from 8 to 3, during the months of September through May.

      March 12, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Ted Ward

    "equipped to do battle with enemy battleships and submarines..." Battleships? What is this, 1939? Who is this out-of-date fossil that wrote this article!? Can't CNN afford some real experts to write articles instead of clueless wordsmiths? This sort of thing really undermines one's confidence (achemm!) in CNN as a source of information and analysis.

    February 2, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
  6. jpjones

    Bilge water! Instead of arresting the captain of the ship that did the ramming they should give him a medal for showing how
    "sinkable" the frigate was in the first place. If you want to arrest someone, how about the people who built such a piece
    of junk in the first place? I smell corruption in awarding contracts to relatives and cronies.

    February 2, 2011 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Leander

      Do your homework. It was a British Leander class vessel. If you smell corruption and cronyism, then you'd had better look to the UK. Proper damage control and counter flooding could probably have saved the ship. But the crew had all those passengers to deal with. Hard to shore up a bulkhead if Ma Ma is screaming for help, huh?

      February 3, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Geovani

      Thank you Pam for a most insightful and pitasonase post. You have clearly thought these significant and weighty matters through. I applaud you for all you have endured and processed. The closeness with which you have walked with the Lord to be able to write with such clarity is evident. Both of my parents died before I was able to bring matters of emotional neglect and physical abuse up with them. That has not stopped me however, from engaging with the inner work with a view to acquiring more emotional freedom. I think I may have been able to have a fairly meaningful interaction with my Father given the opportunity. As a young woman he did of his own volition apologize for not being the Father I needed. I respected him for that action. Even so the specifics of the abuse and the devastating toll it has continued to have through my life was never addressed or acknowledged. There is more doubt about how my Mother would have responded. She died in my early twenties. To this day though the perceived disrespect of others for me is my achilles heel. Learning to respect myself is an ongoing process it seems.One thing I know is that the impact of the abuse I suffered and survived is a major contributor to explain my childless state now as a women well beyond child bearing years. I knew I did not ever want to repeat what had happened to me in the life of another innocent and because I was so unaware of all that was involved and could not predict how I would be as a Mother I made something of an unconscious decision not to entertain the idea of having my own child or children. I am just learning how to attend to the realities of my wounded inner child at this late stage after many years of making a conscious effort to do so. I am hopeful that I am making progress at this time that will be transformative and bring with it more freedom from the pain and confusion of the past.

      March 14, 2012 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
  7. John Ronald

    Its surprise me they did not blame Pakistan yet, I think that is coming soon,

    February 3, 2011 at 7:46 am | Report abuse |
  8. Tuti

    German Merchant ship, was involved. German defence Minister willing to sell 126 Euro Fighters to India and wanted to go from India to Pakistan and sell defence products to them as well. German civilians are for "No War" at home ground but sell defence product to all big and small nations. Germany defence export nation behind US and Russia. Indian Tax payers will have to bear the loss of Navy warship INS Vindhyagiri and then buy products from Germany to keep German living standard high.

    February 3, 2011 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
  9. Pakistan Fan

    I am a Pakistani, and I would like to categorically, legally, legitimately, honestly and HUMBLY admit to this sinking. We in Pakistan planned, designed this well co-ordinated attack. First we made sure that indians do not trains their SEAMEN in proper evacuation in case of emergency, then we wrote the manual that says when a ship in on fire, pour more water on it so it sinks quicker. After all that, we scheduled a "every sailor takes his extended 32 member" family day for a sail, so it will take days to evacuate. And last but not least, we called the captain on of the tanker that rammed in to the warship for a tech support, and he obliged by taking his eyes away from the steering wheel and took 3 hours to reset the password for my Windows 95.

    February 3, 2011 at 11:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Leo Pakistani

      I agree with you and regret that, I was not included in the planning of this mission

      February 5, 2011 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
  10. ding

    I fully agree with you, jones. Have u ever sailed inside the mumbai harbour, its a mess. THE ATC never answers at the right time and the ships crossing each other with both pilots on board have experienced pilots, so how is this happening...hello who's listening... because the ATC deff doesnt. There are barges all over the place, fishing boats, you cant count them, and then the INDIAN NAVY DECIDES TO TAKE A STROLL, (cruise) ALL OF A SUDDEN. Its all in gods hands. They still hav not learned from the oil spill which was caused by d last ship accident. And then they blame it on the captain. Like he is supposed to b someone put there to cause the mishap. Hes new to the port, what are such experienced pilots and Navy personnel doing, they are in and out of the harbour strolling around sorry (cruising) around. Sometimes there are masters who dont speak proper english. hello. who's complaining.

    February 3, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      you seem to be in the right place my friend good words.

      February 4, 2011 at 2:27 am | Report abuse |
  11. James

    The captain must have US diplomatic immunity. BTW, indian navy should buy cyprus-flagged 2nd hand ships and commission them as battleship... at least they will not sink so quickly.

    February 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Pierre

    German merchant vessel...
    Thanks god they dont have a real navy, but if their merchant vessel can sink stuff that easily they probably dont need;-)

    February 3, 2011 at 5:56 pm | Report abuse |
  13. amna

    I Hope & Wish That The indian Navy Plans More Family Days At Sea. Indians can't even look where they are going in sea, ESPECIALLY during the day, & they are going to fight war with the GREAT PAKISTANI'S.

    February 5, 2011 at 2:23 am | Report abuse |
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