Mumbai, Dec 20:
Indian merchant navy ship captain Sunil James, released from a Togo jail Thursday, is expected to reach his home in suburban Malad here Friday afternoon, a relative said.
James was held July 31 along with two Indian sailors from the vessel MT Ocean Centurion near the west coast of Africa. He was in a Togo jail for the past five months.
After sustained efforts by the Indian government and his family members, James and another sailor were released early Thursday and took a flight from West Africa to New Delhi.
Reported to be in good health, a connecting Jet Airways flight will bring James from New Delhi to Mumbai around 2 p.m. Friday, his brother-in-law Rakesh Madappa said.
He will go to see the body of his only child, 11-month old Vivaan, who died Dec 2 and is being kept in a south Mumbai morgue.
The family had decided not to conduct the child’s last rites till James was released.
Madappa told IANS: “We have not yet decided on the funeral though tentatively we have fixed it for Saturday in Malad. But, the final decision will be taken by Vivaan’s father only.”
After the ordeal in Togo, there was subdued joy among the family members – James’ mother, wife Aditi, her brother-in-law Ramesh Madappa and his wife Avni Madappa.
A relieved and tearful Aditi managed to speak briefly to James, who expressed happiness over his release and thanked the Indian authorities.
He also expressed grief to Aditi over Vivaan’s death.
The family said they hoped the Christmas and the New Year will help heal their wounds and everything would turn out for the better in 2014.