Scrap deal for D-gang
Author: J Dey Date: 06 May 2008
Dawood gang will benefit from Union government's ban on ships over 25-years-old
The Union government’s ban on 200 ships that are over 25 years old, could mean a windfall for the cash-starved ship breaking companies in the country — Dawood Ibrahim.
The Ministry of Shipping, in a circular dated April 24 (a copy of which is available with this newspaper) has banned these ships from plying in Indian waters from May 15. This will affect shipping companies, exporters, importers and agents.
On an average, a medium-sized vessel is valued at around Rs 100 crore in the international market.
Earlier, Joint Commissioner of Police (crime) Rakesh Maria confirmed that some businessmen and shipping agents close to Dawood were into ship breaking –— all working as fronts.
The spiraling price of scrap is expected to ring in huge profits for the operators — the going price for steel scrap is Rs 46 per kg. Some operators, who act as fronts for various gangs, pay up to Rs 3 crore for old ships.
The other theory is that several large corporate houses are diversifying into ship building.
The age restrictions could help them bag huge orders in the next few months. A new ship costs around Rs 100 crore in the international market, fetching around 30 per cent in kickbacks for those involved in the deal.
Director General of Shipping Kiran Dingra was unavailable for comment.