Ship services between Mumbai and Goa to resume once again since the last trip approximately 26 years ago. It’s a joint decision of Mumbai Port Trust (MPT) and Maharashtra Maritime Board (MMB) to bring this service back to light again.
A senior official from MMB said, “The service is expected to start by end of March or April next year, currently we are evaluating proposals from various shipping companies who have shown interest in starting the service.”
The ship will depart from Ferry Wharf or Bhaucha Dhakka in Mumbai and will ride up to Goa. The journey will have stops at various locations. Halts include Dighi in Raigad district, Dabhol and Jaigad in Ratnagiri district, Vijay Durg and Malvan eventually terminating at Panjim in Goa.
According to the MMB official, “Service was closed down in 1989 after boats operating en route were requisitioned by Indian Navy for its Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) operations in Sri Lanka. Subsequently, boat services could not be launched as Konkan Railway had started functioning on the route. Mumbai-Goa Highway was widened and air fares became competitive, making air journeys to Goa affordable for the middle and upper-middle classes.”
During the 80’s, ship services from Mumbai to Goa was the only way to travel. Due to other means of transport, the demand for ship services decreased. However, the visibility of the exceptional growth in the number of passengers requires a demand for Mumbai-Goa regular ship service. Tourists as well as regular passengers concerned with safety, time and also their budget, have shown interest, the official added.
MMB officials expect services between Mumbai and Jaigad to start in January next year. It’s great news for people who missed travelling by ship from Mumbai to Goa. Here is a chance for enthusiasts to be a part of such journeys.
What a beautiful trip that used to be! Our older generations would speak all about their journey. The passengers would be a lively bunch of Goans, tourists, hippies, Konkan coast travellers, all enjoying it like a family.