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Means of Transport
 
 
     
 
     
 
The Shipping services is the life line of the people of Lakshadweep. Fishing, coconut plantation and coir twisting are the only means of livelihood of the islanders. There is no agriculture activity in the islands sufficiently to meet the day today requirements of the people. Hence all food articles, grains, cereals, vegetables are transported from Mainland. Similarly there is no major industrial activity in the islands other than some small cottage industry or small scale industry. Thus all commodities like building materials, fuel, clothing, are also transported from Mainland. The people have to depend upon the mainland for medical facilities as well since there are no major hospitals except one referral hospital at the headquarter island, Kavaratti. In the field of education also there are no higher education centres above the level of plus two. Hence, the people perforce have to travel to the Mainland or from one island to other island for receiving medical treatment or for education. Shipping services are the primary means of transportation of men and material between the islands and Mainland as well as in the Inter-island sectors

Cargo traffic between the mainland and the islands is catered mainly by the vessels, which fall in the following two categories:
(i) Govt. owned ships
(ii) Private Motorised Sailing Vessels(MSVs)

The cargo mainly flows from Mainland to Islands. The small quantity of cargo that moves from islands to mainland mostly consist of coir, copra and dried tuna fish known as “Mas” and is transported by private Motorised Sailing Vessels. A major portion of cargo is being transported by MSVs as more than 100 MSVs calls Lakshadweep islands per year.

From 1987 the Administration of the Union Territory is operating a dauphin helicopter from Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited, as a medical ambulance for casualty evacuation from other islands to Kavaratti as well as from all islands to Kochi. The same helicopter is also used for inter-island passenger transport during monsoon when the fair weather ships and boats are out of service. The second one named N3 which started operationg from Jan 2009 and its used in the same way as mentioned above. Apart from this it is also performing daily trips to Agatti during all seasons for connecting the Indian Airlines operating from Agatti. The Indian Airlines is operating a 15 seated mini aircraft in the Agatti –Kochi sector daily except Sunday and in the Agatti-Goa sector on alternate days.
From April 2007, a private carrier, Kingfisher Airlines, has commenced flights to and from Agatti.

Passenger Ships

Name of the Ship/Vessel

Passenger capacity

Cargo Capacity

MV Arabian Sea 250 Passengers 100 MT
MV Kavaratti 700 Passengers 160 MT

MV Bharatseema

380 Passengers 160 MT

MV Amindivi

150 Passengers 25 MT

MV Minicoy

150 Passenger 25 MT

MV Dweepsetu

150 Passengers 25 MT

Inter Island Speed Vessels

Name of the Ship/Vessel

Passenger capacity

MV Skipjack 50
MV Viringili 15
MV Bangaram 20
MV Parali 150
MV Valiyapani 150
MV Cheriyapani 150
MV Black Merlin 50
MV Blue Merlin 50

MV Kadeejabeevi

100

MV Hameedathbee

100

Cargo Ships

Name of the Ship/Vessel

Passenger capacity

Cargo Capacity

M.V. Thinnakara

Nil 600 MT

M.V. Laccadives

Nil 600 MT

M.V. Cheriyam

Nil 600 MT
M.V. Ubaidulla Nil 600 MT