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Port Trust

In all countries, it is recognised that there is need to control the foreshore and adjoining navigable
waters. Roman Law is built on the concept that foreshore was in dominium populi, that is for all the
people to use freely, under the authority of government. It is possible to establish a port only on
foreshore because convenient land interface from sea is necessary for ships to moor for loading and
unloading cargo. Foreshore belonged to all and therefore it should be freely accessible to all. Being
open to all, competition would arise on use of foreshore land especially for establishing port.
Naturally this calls for regulation of competition. Being unique public assets, foreshore land cannot
be sold to any private entity. Experience world-wide suggests that the best form of regulating
foreshore land without infringing on public rights is to vest foreshore and adjoining water spread to a
board of trustees, where all interests both private and public including local authority is
represented.
In India seaports began to be established as statutory public trusts. The first such public trust was
established for Bombay Port in 1873 following which, Bombay Port Trust Act in 1879 was enacted.
Similar enactments followed, i.e., for Calcutta Port in 1890; and for Madras Port in 1905. In 1963 an
Act enabling Central Government to declare a port as major Port and to vest foreshore and water
spread of such a port to a board of trustees of that port was enacted. This is Major Port Trusts Act,
1963 All ports previously established under different Acts were brought within the purview of this
newly enacted law.
Besides representatives of Central Government, the Act provides for representation in the board of
trustees for various interests. Such interests include (1) labour employed in the port a minimum of
two representatives; (2 ship owners; (3) owners of sailing vessels; (4) shippers; and (5) such other
interests, which in the opinion of the Central Government, ought to be represented on the Board.
Servicing trade and providing shipping facility that is adequate to service trade are functions vested
in the port trusts as per Major Port Trusts Act, 1963. However, focus of development of ports began
to shift from trade to operators of ships especially for container cargo.

Currently there are 13 Major Ports in India. Excepting Ennore Port, all other ports are governed
in accordance with Major Port Trusts Act, 1963. Each port has separate board of trustees
appointed by the Central Government. Ennore Port is public limited company fully owned by
the Central Government. India is a union of 28 states and 7 Union Territories. India is officially
referred to as the Union of Republic of India. Though there is division of powers between the
Central Government and government of a state, Major Ports come within purview of Central
Government. The thirteen Major Ports are:

Mumbai (previously known as Bombay) - http://mumbaiport.gov.in/

Kolkatta (previously known as Calcutta) http://www.kolkataporttrust.gov.in/

Chennai (Previously known as Madras) - http://www.chennaiport.gov.in/

Kandla - http://kandlaport.gov.in/

Jawaharlal Nehru Port (an adjacent port near Mumbai) - http://www.jnport.com/

Ennore (Near Chennai) - http://www.ennoreport.gov.in/

Mormugao (Goa) - http://www.mptgoa.com/

New Mangalore - http://www.newmangalore-port.com/

Cochin - http://www.cochinport.com/

V.O. Chidambaranar Port (previously known as Tuticorin) - http://www.vocport.gov.in/

Port Blair (In Andaman and Nicobar islands -

Visakhapatnam - http://www.vizagport.com/

Paradip - http://www.paradipport.gov.in/

Features:

Efficient and economic service

User friendly approach

Simplified and integrated procedures

Automated operations

Minimum detention

Faster Turn Round

Sustained productivity improvement

Adequate and safe storage

Congenial industrial relations

Community development

Afforestation

Environment upgradation

Continued expansion and upgradation

Well-connected with hinterland by road, rail and waterways