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World's First Woman To Receive Bravery At Sea Award

Captain Radhika Menon was awarded the International Maritime Organization (IMO) Award for Exceptional Bravery at sea. Radhika was recognized for leading a dramatic rescue of 7 fishermen from a sinking fishing boat in the Bay of Bengal. This is the first time a woman has been awarded the top bravery prize by the IMO.

London based (IMO) is UN's specialized agency for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships. IMO also awarded BM Das for rescuing 14 crew members of the merchant ship Coastal Pride, which capsized and eventually sank.

Menon was the master of the oil tanker Sampurna Swarajya when she led the rescue of the crew of the fishing boat Durgamma. Durgamma was adrift following engine failure and loss of anchor in severe weather in June last year.

The boat had lost power and was sinking, in the fierce rain, high speed wind and 27 foot high waves off the coast of Gopalpur, Odisha.The fishermen, who their families thought were lost, were surviving on ice from cold storage after food and water got washed away.

Menon led a successful rescue operation, using the pilot ladder and with life jackets and buoys on standby. Menon was also the first woman to become the captain of Indian Merchant Navy in 2011. She is an inspiration and a role model for women across the globe.