Memoirs of a Merchant Marine Chief Engineer

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Guramrit Singh Kahlon started his maritime career as a trainee marine engineer. He rose through the ranks to become Merchant Marine Chief Engineer.

Part I of his memoir recounts his ancestors’ humble beginnings after India's partition. The subsequent segments describe his journey from his childhood on merchant ships with his father—to some lighthearted tales of his growing up years—to turning the page and describing some very interesting portrayals of mentorship and learning the tricks of the trade.

Part II recounts several on-site troubleshooting narratives that he witnessed firsthand. Some of the book's gripping short stories depict dramatic moments and nail-biting tension on the high seas, such as losing control of the main engine, being adrift in a merciless sea for days, and even retrieving a dead ship after a prolonged blackout.

The accounts reveal that the shipboard routine is nothing short of a battlefield. Not a day goes by without running into a problem that does not have the potential to get on your nerves. Like torpedoes and shells, the gremlins ambush from all directions. One might find himself addressing a multitude of problems daily, along with the never-ending saga of vetting and inspections. It is commendable to see the ship crews take an indifferent and, at times, impromptu approach to clearing out the obstacles. Part II of the memoir concludes with an account of a wonderful vacation that every seafarer dreams of.

In Part III, he delves into the history of the Indian shipping industry, beginning with the British India Steam Navigation Company. He goes on to explain how the Scindia Steam Navigation Company came to be and how they collaborated with the Government of India to establish the Eastern Shipping Corporation. The formation of the Western Shipping Corporation, followed by the merger of the two corporations to form the Shipping Corporation of India, has also been illuminated.

  • Paperback: 302 pages
  • Publisher: White Falcon Publishing; 1 edition (2023)
  • Author: Guramrit Singh Kahlon
  • ISBN-13: 9781636408668
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.5 Inches

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