The erudition, policymaking abilities, humility, and conviction in taking everybody along were some of the many attributes of Mr Deepak Shetty, IRS, Director-General of Shipping, highlighted at a farewell function organised by the Association of Multimodal Transport Operators of India (AMTOI) at the Yacht Club, Mumbai on November 28, 2016. Mr Shetty retired after a little more than 36 years of service.
He was with the Directorate-General of Shipping in Mumbai for 5 years and 8 months, initially as Joint DG and then for two years as DG. The function, compered by Mr Xerxes Master, Honorary Secretary of AMTOI, began with the welcome address by Mr Vivek Kele, President of AMTOI, who pointed out that the well-attended event was a reflection of the affection the fraternity had for Mr Shetty.
Mr Amitabh Kumar, IRS, Joint DG, in his address, said Mr Shetty believed in taking the fraternity along even while framing the smallest of policies, and lauded his consistency of focus and perspective, and vision. While there have been challenges, policies formulated, under Mr Shetty have brought about positive changes and made things easier for the industry, he said. He expressed the hope that Mr Shetty will continue to guide the Directorate with his knowledge and experience.
Mrs Medha Lotlikar, a college mate of Mr Shetty, gave a personal account of his formative years, reminiscing about his skills as a debater in college, his dazzling intellect since a young age, and pointed out that he was somebody who knew what he wanted to be very early on. “He practices what he preaches,” she stressed, describing Mr Shetty as a friend, role model and guide. “I have learnt a lot from him. They don’t make people like him anymore.”
Later, Mr Shetty, along with his wife Dr (Mrs) Sujatha Shetty, sat down for a brief interview with Mr Anil Devli, CEO of INSA, during which he emphasised that he would look back at his career in the civil service with immense satisfaction. He also touched upon his training and expertise in anti-smuggling and anti-money laundering operations, an area in which he is today known internationally.
The Directorate’s focused efforts at the IMO in getting the Indian maritime region removed from the war risk insurance area (which saved significant costs for the ex-im trade), the recent freeing of an Indian flag vessel from UN sanctions and obtaining the release of Indian seafarers held hostage by pirates were some of the proactive steps taken by Mr Shetty that were highlighted on the occasion.
Earlier, Mr Devli made the point that the DG took service to a new level.
In his address to the gathering, Mr Shetty thanked AMTOI and the fraternity for this “extraordinary gesture” and appreciated the opportunities he got to interact with a wide spectrum of the industry during his fulfilling stint with the Directorate.
He called on the many segments of the maritime fraternity to come together to form a Confederation in order to speak in one voice and be heard in the corridors of power, adding that the industry has the resilience to overcome the current difficult times.
He thanked all the industry stakeholders for their support, as well as the staff at the Directorate, the officers in the MMDs across the country, among others, for their continuous efforts towards facilitating a better maritime administration.