A group of 17 Indian sailors, who were held captive of Somali pirates, along with an Italian ship, for over 10 months, returned home on Tuesday.

According to a statement by the Union Ministry of Shipping, the vessel M.T. Savina Caylyn, with 17 Indians, which was hijacked on Feb 8, 2011, was released on Dec. 22, 2011 from Somalia and all crew members have arrived in India via Fujairah. However, it was not known whether a ransom was paid for their release.

M.T. Savina Caylyn, owned by Italian shipping company Fratelli D'Amato, was hijacked 500 miles off the coast of India, while on a voyage from Sudan to Malaysia, reported CNN IBN Live.

Meanwhile, another ship M. V. Spar Rigel, from Norway, with 20 Indians and 1 Ukranian, was hijacked off the coast of Nigeria, on Tuesday morning, said the Shipping Ministry's statement.

"The crew, following the best management practices, locked themselves into the citadel (Safe House) on board. The naval forces in the region were alerted and the vessel is now free of pirates and all crew are reportedly safe," added the statement. It also mentioned "so far, no ship with Indian flag has been hijacked".

As on date (Jan. 10, 2011) the number of Indian crew in custody of Somali pirates on different ships is as follows: This does not include mechanized sailing vessels...



a.  M.V. ICEBERG-1 PANAMA 29.03.2010 6
b. M.T. FAIRCHEM BOGEY MARSHALL IS   20.08.2011 21
c.. M.V. AL BEDO MALAYSIA 26.11.2010 2
d.  M.T. ENRICO IEVOLI ITALY 27.12.2011 7

Source: Ministry of Shipping.