Azamara may avoid India
The US-based Azamara Club Cruises owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd plans to take India off its route map if the immigration and customs formalities are not systematized.
The US-based Azamara Club Cruises owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd is planning to take India off its route map if the immigration and customs formalities are not systematised to ease the hardships faced by passengers, said a top official of the cruise ship ‘Azamara Quest’.
Fuming at the delays at the immigration and customs at Chennai Port, the cruise ship’s captain Jose Vilarinho told reporters on board ‘Azamara Quest’, “If India wants cruise liners to call on its ports then the procedures have to change. When the immigration and customs formalities are completed in a short time at Indian airports, the ports can also do that.”
He said the issue is not about the maritime and port facilities like berthing but with the immigration and customs. He said the company is mulling taking India off its route map from 2017 onwards.
“We may not be calling on Mumbai port from 2017 onwards,” Vilarinho said. He said if such a bureaucratic attitude persists then it will be difficult to handle large cruise liners with a carrying capacity of around 6,000 people.