Kerala High Court on Wednesday ordered the release of the Russian flag ship detained at Cochin Port, following the settlement of disputes between the owners and suppliers on bunker fuel payments.
Justice Sathish Ninan had earlier directed the Deputy Conservator of the Port for the seizure and detention of the Russian flagged vessel , as complete payments to the tune of $23,053.14 had not been made to Estonian bunker supplier at Fujairah anchorage.
VJ Mathew, senior advocate, who appeared for the Estonian Bunker Supplier said the dispute has resulted in a maritime claim under section 4(1)(l) of the Admiralty (Jurisdiction and Settlement Of Maritime Claims) Act, 2017. Consequently, an Admiralty suit was filed before the High Court seeking the arrest and detention of the Russian flag vessel to enforce a maritime claim or in the alternative to provide security in Court for Arbitration.
However, the High Court had not prevented the unloading of cargo from the vessel as it arrived with general cargo mainly arms and ammunitions for the Indian Navy. In the meantime, the disputed amount was settled by the parties and on the basis of a withdrawal memo filed for Estonian Firm, the suit was dismissed as withdrawn on Wednesday, he said.