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Explosive Ordnance Disposal team conducts inspection of merchant vessel MV Chem Pluto arriving at Mumbai port

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The Indian Navy’s explosive ordnance disposal team yesterday carried out a detailed inspection of merchant vessel MV Chem Pluto on its arrival at Mumbai harbour, two days after the ship was hit by a drone off India’s west coast in the Arabian Sea when it was on its way to New Mangalore port.

The Indian Navy spokesperson said a joint investigation by various agencies commenced following completion of the analysis of the vessel by the explosive ordnance team. In view of spate of attacks on commercial vessels in the Arabian Sea, the Navy deployed P-8I long-range patrol aircraft for surveillance, and warships INS Mormugao, INS Kochi and INS Kolkata in the region to maintain “deterrent presence”.

Saturday’s drone attack on Liberian-flagged MV Chem Pluto came amid increasing concerns over various commercial vessels being targeted reportedly by Iran-backed Houthi rebels in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden amid the Israel-Hamas conflict.

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