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Ministry of Shipping, Road Transport And Highways
(Department of Shipping)
MERCANTILE MARINE DEPARTMENT
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 Rules & Regulations
Chapter : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9
Chapter I - General Provisions

1.
 
These rules may be called The Merchant Shipping (Standard of training, Certification and Watchkeeping for seafarers) Rules 1998.

These rules come into force on the 1st day of August 1998.
 
2.
 
These rules shall apply to:
(a) any candidate who is a citizen of India; and 
(b) any other candidate who is not a citizen of India and is permitted by the chief Examiner to be examined, assessed and certified under these rules
3.
 
The objective of these rules is to give full effect of implementation to the provisions of International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for seafarers 1978 as amended on the 7th day of July, 1995 and as adopted by International Maritime Organization, London.
 
4.
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1.
In these rules, unless the context otherwise requires -
 
(a) "Act" means the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 (44 of 1958);
 
(b) "Appropriate certificate" means a certificate issued and endorsed in accordance with the provisions of these rules and entitled the lawful holder thereof to serve in the capacity and perform the functions involved at the level of responsibility specified therein on a ship of the type, tonnage or power and means of propulsion indicated by the endorsement while engaged on the particular voyage concern;
  (c) "Approved"' means approved by the Central Government;
 
(d) "Training and assessment programme" means the programme of training and assessment of seafarers as approved by the Central Government;
 
(e) "Assessment Center" means a center designated by the Director general of shipping responsible for the assessment of candidates and maintaining records for the purpose of assessment;
 
(f) "Certificate of competency" means an appropriate certificate issued by the government of India for the purposes of rule 5; 
 
(g) "The Chief Examiner " means the Chief Examiner of Master and Deck Department personnel or the chief Examiner of Engine Department personnel, as the case may be;
 
(h) "Company " means the power of the ship or any other organization or person such as the manager or the bareboat charter, who has assumed the responsibility for the operation of the ship from the ship owner and who, on assuming such responsibility, has agreed to take over all the duties and responsibility imposed on the company by the STCW Convention;
 
(i) "Examiner" means Principal Officer Nautical, Deputy Nautical Advisor, Nautical Surveyor or Principal Officer Engineering, Deputy Chief Surveyor, Engineer and ship surveyor as the case may be, appointed under section 79 of the Act.
 
(j) "From" means a form appended to these rules;
 
(k) "Month" means a calendar month.  The time included between any given day in any month and the preceding day of the following month (both days inclusive) shall be reckoned as one month;
 
(l) "Near - Coastal Voyages" means the coastal trade or voyages from any port or place in the Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Myanmar and Sri Lanka to any other port or place in these countries including proximities of safe havens on such voyages;
 
(m) "STCW" Convention means International Convention on Standard of training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, 1978 as amended on the 7th day of July, 1995;
 
(n) "STCW Code" means Seafarers Training, Certification and Watchkeeping Code adopted by the 1995 conference of Parties to the STCW Convention;
 
(o) Year means a calendar Year.
2.
Word and phrases used in these rules and not defined but defined in the Act shall have the meanings respectively assigned to them.
 
5.
 
1. A Certificate of Competency may be issued for the following grades namely :-  
(i) Second mate of a Foreign-going Ship;
 
(ii) First mate of a Foreign-going Ship;
 
(iii) Master of a Foreign-going Ship;
 
(iv) Extra Master;
 
(v) Navigational Watchkeeping Officer;
 
(vi) Mate of Home Trade Ship;
 
(vii) Master of a Home Trade Ship;
 
(viii) Marine Engineer Officer class IV;
 
(ix) Marine Engineer Officer class III;
 
(x) Marine Engineer Officer class II;
 
(xi) Marine Engineer Officer class I;
 
(xii) Extra first Class Engineer.
 
6.
Training and assessment Top..
1. The Chief Examiner concerned shall ensure that the training and assessment of the candidates for certification as a seafarers are administered, supervised and monitors in accordance with the provisions of the Act, these rules and the STCW Code and those persons responsible for the imparting the training and assessment as required under the STCW Convention, are appropriately qualified for the type and level of training and assessment of the competence in accordance with the provisions of the Act, these rules and the STCW Code.  
7.
 
1. the Chief Examiner concerned shall ensure that all the training, assessment of competence, certification, endorsement and revalidation activities under his authority are continuously monitored through a quality standards system including the qualifications and experience of the instructor and assessors.
 
8.
 
1. Every candidate for the certification as a seafarer shall provide satisfactory proof of the following documents to the Chief Examiner concerned  namely :-
(a)
a valid passport
(b)
a certificate showing the date of birth and 
(c)
a medical fitness certificate includes eyesight and hearing as prescribed in the Merchant Shipping (Medical Examination) Rules, 1986.
2. The standard of medical fitness for the candidates shall be the same as given in the merchant Shipping (medical Examination) Rules, 1986.
 
9.
 
1. The Director General of shipping shall designate an Assessment Center  
2. The assessment Center shall -  
(a)
maintain records of all candidates with regards to their sea going service, progress of ashore and on-board training and also monitor such returns;
(b)
received periodical returns of the progress of ashore and on board training and also monitor such returns;
(c)
examine the documentary evidence that the candidate has fulfilled the eligibility criteria for the joining an approved training and assessment programme; and 
(d)
assist the chief Examiner or Examiner concerned, as the case may be, in the conduct of written, oral and practical examinations and assessment on the completion of the approved training and assessment programme for each function.
 
3. Every seafarer shall carry all appropriate certificate in original while serving in a relevant capacity on board a ship in accordance with the applicable safe manning requirements as provided in these rules.  
10.
Revalidation and upgrading of certificates Top..
1. Every seafarer who holds an appropriate certificate in accordance with the Convention, the Act and the rules framed there under prior to the date of commencement of these rules, may apply for the revalidation and upgrading during the transitional period of the STCW Convention that is from the 1st February, 1997 to the 1st day of February, 2002 ( both days inclusive ). Such candidates shall -
 
(i)
meet the standard of medical fitness as prescribed in the Merchant Shipping (Medical Examination) Rules, 1986 and the STCW Code 
(ii)
complete an approved refresher and updating course in accordance with section A-1/11 of the STCW Code 
(iii)
be subject to sureties and assessment by an assessment center; and 
(iv)
be issued with a certificate regarding complying with the requirements of the STCW Convention where up on the earlier certificate shall be withdrawn.
 
2. Every seafarer holding as appropriate certificate who is serving at sea or intends to sea for service after a period ashore in order to continue to qualify for the sea going service at intervals not exceeding five years, shall -
 
(i)
meet the standard of medical fitness as prescribed in the Merchant Shipping (Medical Examination) Rules 1986 and the STCW code.
(ii)
establish continued professional competence by attending an approved revalidation course in accordance with section A-1/11 of the STCW Code;
(iii)
be subject to security and assessment by as assessment center; and 
(iv)
be issued with an endorsement revalidating the candidates certificate.
 
11.
 
Indian Naval officers holding valid certificates of service issued prior to coming into force of the Merchant Shipping (Examination of Masters) Rules, 1985 and Merchant Shipping (Examination of Engineer Officers in the Merchant Navy) Rules, 1989 who intend to become holders of a certificate of competency complying with the requirements of these  rules shall be required to complete approved training and assessment programme prior to issuance of a certificate of competency. Such as candidates existing experience, qualifications and certificates shall form the basis for determining qualifying merchant ship sea going service as per approved training and assessment programme.
 
12.
Responsibilities of the company  
1. the company shall provide written instruction to the Master for policies and procedures and be responsible for the assignment of seafarers for the service in the their ships in accordance with the provisions of these rules and the STCW Convention and it shall ensure that -
 
(a)
each seafarer assigned to any of its ships holds an appropriate certificate in accordance with the provisions of the STCW  Convention;
(b)
Its ships are manned in compliance with the applicable safe manning requirements as provided in these rules;
(c)
Documentation and data including their experience, training medical fitness and competency in assigned duties relevant to all seafarers employed on its ships are maintained and readily accessible to all concerned;
(d)
seafarers, on being assigned to any of its  ships are familiarized with their specific duties and with arrangements installation, equipments, procedures and ship characteristics that are relevant to their routine or emergency duties; 
(e)
the ships complement can effectively co-ordinates their activities in an emergency situation and in performing function vital to safety or to the prevent or mitigation of pollution; and 
(f)
the Master of the ship under whose command an individual seafarer sails on a particular ship shall  be responsible to the company in respect of his duties and obligations.
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