GUWAHATI: It’s a good sign that fleets of new vessels, including roro vessels, are being brought to the State by the State Inland Water Transport (IWT) Department. But why doesn’t the department feel like reviving the Northeast’s only crew training centre that has lapsed into the comatose long back?
The training centre set up way back in the 1970s is not enrolling trainees now. Strangely enough, candidates from other States of the Northeast come to the centre for examinations. After the declaration of results, such candidates go with certificates.
What ails the training centre is still to be known. However, what is seen that it has only one assistant superintendent? Other employees of the training centre – the two sanctioned posts of instructors and one sanctioned post of superintendent – have long been lying vacant.
According to sources, the training centre located onboard TS Brahmaputra, a vessel at Rajadwar Ghat at Fancy Bazar in Guwahati was running properly till 1999. After that, it was seen imparting training occasionally till 2010. However, the training centre totally lapsed into comatose after 2010.
In its heydays, the training centre used to impart two pieces of training – Laskar or training for deck management and Girajsar or training for engine management.
A question that irks circles concerned in the State is: if crew members are not kept in training, how come they do their best while facing accidents? Crew members in a vessel always have a greater role to play while facing accidents in rivers. The importance of trained crew members is always very high in Assam where people have to be ferried across rivers as turbulent as the Brahmaputra.
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