The Mercantile Marine Department (MMD), Kochi,  which conducted a preliminary inquiry into the collision of a merchant ship with a fishing boat, has found the vessel guilty.  

The authorities submitted the initial report to the Directorate General of Shipping.  

Amber L, a Panama-registered merchant ship was involved in a collision with a fishing boat in the sea off the coast in Kochi, resulting in the death of two fishermen. MMD has ordered the detention of the ship at Kochi until further orders and has provided a copy of the report to other agencies concerned, including the Kerala police.

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The MMD said that based on digital and physical evidence, it had prima facie concluded that "the Panama Flag Bulk Carrier, Amber L, IMO No. 9200354, is the merchant ship involved in the collision with the Indian fishing boat, Carmel Matha, at about 0223 hours on June 11 off the Kerala coast".

At the time of the incident, Capt Georgiannakis Ioannis (Greek national) was on the command of the vessel, second officer Galanos Athanasios (Greek national) was keeping a navigational watch on the bridge and Zewana (Myanmar national) was the designated Able Seaman, the report said.

The causes and circumstances of the incident, along with the contributing factors, violations of national or international maritime laws, if any, professional lapses and human errors would be included in the "final report", to be submitted to the Centre, it added.

The final report will also have details, including the extent of involvement of both the vessels in the incident and the recommendations to "avoid recurrence of such unfortunate incidents in the future".

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Two fishermen were killed and 11 others injured when the merchant ship hit their fishing boat off the Kochi coast.

Of the 14 crew members on board the fishing boat, 11 were rescued by other such vessels in the vicinity, and two bodies were recovered, while one fisherman, Motidas from Assam, was missing.

(With inputs from PTI)