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House Flags of Indian Shipping Companies

Last modified: 2012-06-11 by ian macdonald
Keywords: great eastern shipping | india steamship | scindia | shipping corporation of india | bombay & persia s.n. | bombay steam navigation | century shipping | chowgule steamships | damodar bulk carriers | essar shipping | have |
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Amer Ship Management Ltd.

[Amer Ship Management Ltd.] image by Ivan Sache, 4 May 2012

Josef Nuesse shows the flag of Amer Ship Management Ltd., a Mumbai-based company, as horizontally divided orange-white-orange with the red letters "ASM" in the middle.
http://www.flagpole.de/reedereiflaggen/welt/asien-i/
Ivan Sache, 4 May 2012

Apcar & Co. (Apcar Line)

[Apcar & Co.] image by Ivan Sache, 29 March 2008

Lloyd's Book of House Flags and Funnels (1912) shows the house flag of "Apcar & Co. (Apcar Line)" (#133, p. 43), a company based in Calcutta, as divided red-white-red-white by a blue saltire.

Quoting Wikipedia:

"For more than a century the Apcar Family was prominent in commerce and industry in India.
[...]
Apcar & Co acted as general business agents and insurance brokers and controlled the Apcar Line. The Apcar Line ran a fleet of five vessels from Calcutta carrying Chinese coolies and cargo, largely to and from Singapore, Hong Kong and Amoy (Xiamen), with connections to Japan. Pirates were active, and well into the twentieth century, the ships had to be armed and sandbagged against attacks. Apcar & Co also entered the coal business. In 1862 coal seams were discovered near Raniganj and Asansol. Apcar & Co purchased an extensive stretch of land and started a mine at Lachipur (4 miles from Asansol). They also opened coal mines at Charanpur, Faridpur and Borachuck. A large number of Armenians either owned collieries or worked in various capacities in the coalfields. Seeing the rapid development of the coalfields, European firms purchased large areas from Apcar & Co on a royalty basis and started to mine the coal. As a result Asansol became a large and developed mining district. On 27 February 1912 Apcar & Co, ships, workshops and mines, were sold to the British India Steam Navigation Company for Rs 800,000 and absorbed by BISN. Sailings from Calcutta to Japan were still advertised as being conducted by the Apcar Line into the 1950s. The coal mines were managed by Mackinnon, Mackenzie & Co until 1951."

The biography of J.C. Clare (1853-1940) mentions that, in 1875-1880, he "served on the opium steamers of Apcar & Co., Calcutta, trading between Hong Kong and Calcutta."

The Apcar line is briefly mentioned on the British India Steam Navigation Co. page.
Ivan Sache, 29 March 2008


Binny Ship Management Pvt. Ltd.

[Flag of the British Virgin Islands] image by Eugene Ipavec, 27 April 2009

Binny Shipping Ltd and Binny Ship Management Ltd at Tortola (British Virgin Islands) are two companies active – as the names state – in different sectors of shipping both however being concerned with dry bulk. Website at <binnyship.com>. Management includes the few ships operated by the shipping division while in the past, important Indian companies such as Scindia were customer. The shipping division, founded in 1988, currently has two vessels sailing under the Panamanian flag; further expansion is planned. Report on the temporary seizure (luckily resolved) of ‘Nirmal Bhushan’ in Iraq at <www.themarineworld.com>. Shown as a drawing on the site, the house flag is dark blue having a rather small black disk in the centre, bearing a red initial ‘B’.
Jan Mertens, 11 January 2009

Binny Ship Management Pvt. Ltd. is shown by Lloyds as based Mumbai, India and was started in 1988 by V.B. Verma as a ship management company becoming a ship owner in 1995. I know the website stresses the British Virgin Island connection but this seems to be a case of subsidiaries being based in a more favourable tax resort, with their ships being registered in Panama. The flag home probably thus originates from India.
Neale Rosanoski, 8 August 2009


Bombay & Persia S.N. Co., Ltd.

[Bombay & Persia S.N. Co., Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Bombay & Persia S.N. Co., Ld., Bombay - white with Spanish style green stripes. Possible connection with the Mogul Line.
Jarig Bakker, 18 February 2005


Bombay Steam Navigation Co. Ltd.

[Bombay Steam Navigation Co. Ltd]image by Jarig Bakker, based on National Maritime Museum website

Based on the National Maritime Museum website, the house flag of the Bombay Steam Navigation Co. Ltd., Bombay, is a white burgee with a red five-pointed star in the centre. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn.
Jarig Bakker, 5 August 2004


Century Shipping Co., Ltd.

[Century Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Century Shipping Co., Ltd., Bombay - blue-white-blue triband, red logo in center.
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 10 September 2005


Chowgule Steamships Ltd., Bombay

[Flag of Chowgule Steamships Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Chowgule Steamships Ltd., Bombay - orange swallowtail, white "C".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 18 November 2005


Damodar Bulk Carriers Ltd.

[Damodar Bulk Carriers Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Damodar Bulk Carriers Ltd., Bombay - red flag, white disk, red "D".
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 28 September 2005


Dempo Steamships Ltd.

[Flag of Dempo Steamships Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 7 February 2006

Dempo Steamships Ltd., Bombay - blue flag, white diamond, red "D".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 7 February 2006


Essar Shipping Co., Ltd., Bombay

[Flag of Essar Shipping Co., Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Essar Shipping Co., Ltd., Bombay - white flag, a blue arrow-like item.
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 18 November 2005


Everett (India), Pvt., Ltd.

[Flag of Everret Shipping Co., Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Everett (India) Pvt., Ltd. is a diversified Indian shipping and travel company. Its house flag can be seen at http://everett.co.in/travel_clients.htm.
Ron Lahav, 10 November 2007


Five Stars Shipping Co. Pte Ltd.

[Flag of Five Stars Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by António Martins-Tuválkin, 20 June 2007

The house flag (flagoid) of the Mumbai based Five Stars Shipping Co. Pte Ltd. can be found at http://www.shippingdirectory.info. It is divided per saltire in black portions (left and right) and red ones (upper and lower), the name-giving five stars – in white, six-pointed, and resting on two points each – placed in the centre of each triangle, and one in the flag’s centre.

The accompanying text is derivative, rather see the company website:

Five Stars Shipping – founded in 1985 – has all aspects of ship management on offer such as technical and crew management (including training). Most of the cared for vessels are bulk ships. The site “banner” on top shows a logo consisting of a blue triangular sail bearing five five-pointed stars in a diamond pattern, however the ‘Contact us’ section shows a vague impression of the house flag showing all stars next to each other.

PS: this firm is not to be confused with the Chinese-Australian ‘Five Star Shipping’ nor the Myanmar 'Five Star Line'.

Jan Mertens, 22 January 2006


Garware Shipping Corp.

[Flag of Garware Shipping Corp.] by Jarig Bakker, 7 February 2006

Garware Shipping Corp., Ltd., Bombay - yellow flag, red "G".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 7 February 2006


Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd

[Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd] image by Ivan Sache

The Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd. (Mumbai/Bombay)
Flag diagonally divided red-green, with AHB in blue placed on a white rectangle in the middle of the flag.
Ivan Sache
, 31 August 2002

[Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd] image by Rob Raeside

Josef's flag varies from those shown by shipping sources which may indicate changes along the way. The colours are agreed to by the 1966 Liverpool Journal of Commerce sheet but it shows the letters on a white diamond. In support of this version is the fact that it appears as a panel on the funnel as confirmed by photos.

[Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd] image by Rob Raeside

On the other hand Brown 1995 changes the red to orange and reverses the direction of the dividing line to upper hoist to lower fly, again showing a [smaller] white diamond and blue lettering.

[Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd] image by Rob Raeside

A subsidiary was formed in the UK at the beginning of the 1990s as The Great Eastern Shipping Co. London Ltd. with Brown 1995 showing their flag as also a diagonal biband of orange and green, this time divided from lower hoist to upper flag, with overall a back "G".

India Steamship Co. Ltd. For some reason several sources, including the latest Browns, show the flag with the point downwards, which is even more surprising when their funnel images, where the flag [sic] appears as a band, in all cases is shown with the point upwards.

Neale Rosanoski, 18 June 2004


Havers Lines PVT., Ltd., Calcutta

[Flag of Havers Lines PVT., Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Havers Lines PVT., Ltd., Calcutta - blue flag, yellow circle, containing a yellow embattled tower.
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 18 November 2005


Himalaya Shipping Co., Ltd., Calcutta

[Flag of Himalaya Shipping Co., Ltd.] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Himalaya Shipping Co., Ltd., Calcutta - yellow flag, blue "H"-like item.
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 18 November 2005


India General Steam Navigation Co.

[India General Steam Navigation Co. Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker, based on National Maritime Museum website

Based on the National Maritime Museum website, the house flag of the India General Steam Navigation Co. A rectangular flag quartered in red and blue with a white cross. In the centre is a five-pointed red star. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn.
Jarig Bakker, 17 August 2004


India Steamship Co. Ltd.

[India Steamship Co. Ltd.] image by Ivan Sache

India Steamship Co. Ltd. (Calcutta)
Red flag with a yellow flag in the middle.

Ivan Sache, 31 August 2002


Indian Co-operative Navigation & Trading Company

[Indian Co-operative Navigation & Trading Company] image by Jarig Bakker

Indian Co-operative Navigation & Trading Company, Bombay - horizontal triband white-green-white; in center red Maltese cross.
Jarig Bakker, 18 February 2005


Indian Shipping Co., Ltd.

[Indian Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Indian Shipping Co., Ltd., Calcutta - red flag, yellow 5-pointed star. (The star is standing on one point; the funnel has the star on two legs, and Brown 1951 (Wedge, 1951) has that too - see India Steamship Co. Ltd.).
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 28 September 2005


Indus Container Line

[Indus Container line] image by Jarig Bakker, 30 November 2006

One of the companies represented by Belgian agent Durot at Antwerp, Indus Container Line, is established at Mumbai, India. The most I could find on this firm – not very much in fact – can be read at the Durot website: http://www.durot.be/services/indus.htm. Apart from Mumbai, the company has offices at eight other cities in India, not all of them harbours. The only European ports sailed to are Antwerp and Rotterdam, it appears.

Simply designed, the house flag (flagoid) is light blue bearing an orange initial ‘I’. Surely this item will turn up sooner or later on a photo or in a flag & funnel book...
Jan Mertens, 30 November 2006


Jayshree Teas & Industries Ltd., Calcutta

[Flag of Jayshree Teas & Industries Ltd] by Jarig Bakker, 18 November 2005

Jayshree Teas & Industries Ltd, Calcutta - red flag yellow outlined "J".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels
Jarig Bakker
, 18 November 2005


Larsen & Toubro Ltd.

[Larsen & Toubro Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Larsen & Toubro Ltd., Bombay - blue flag with the company logo in center.
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 10 September 2005

[Larsen & Toubro Ltd.] image by António MARTINS-Tuválkin

A slightly different design was given by a flat flag photo in 12 January 2002 by "Jakdustyca":
The shade of blue is darker, the flag ratio is smaller, about 5:8, the outer ring is smaller, the star's tips protrude outside the outer ring, the central disk with "LT" is much smaller, the inner discs are black, not blue, and there is no outer black ring around the central disc.
This is from Joseph Nüsse's site of house flag photos, namely from page http://flags.seeleute.net/118.htm .
António MARTINS-Tuválkin, 8 November 2005


Mogul Line Ltd.

[Mogul Line Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker, based on National Maritime Museum website

Based on the National Maritime Museum website, the  house flag of the Mogul Line Ltd, Bombay, India. A flag with three white and two green horizontal stripes. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn.
Jarig Bakker, 17 August 2004


Ocean Sparkle Co. Ltd.

[Ocean SParkle Co. Ltd.] image by Ivan Sache

Apparently square, with central blue field on a white one edged by a red-and-yellow border (upper and right border of flag red, other borders yellow, diagonally divided).
Ocean Sparkle Ltd was founded in 1995. Activities: towage, lighterage and port management. The firm cooperates with the famous Dutch Wijsmuller group. The company was the first in India to use steel barges and tugs for cargo lighterage instead of the traditional wooden barges. It currently owns 12 barges, two harbor-towing tugs and two ocean going tugs.
Seat: Hyderabad. WebsiteL http://www.oceansparkle.com/

Jan Mertens, Ivan Sache, 3 April 2004


Scindia Steamship Navigation Co. Ltd.

[Scindia Steamship Navigation Co. Ltd.] image by Ivan Sache

The Scindia Steamship Navigation Co. Ltd. (Mumbai/Bombay)
Blue flag with a red swastika placed on a white disc in the middle of the flag.
Ivan Sache
, 31 August 2002

[Scindia Steamship Navigation Co. Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Loughran (1995) shows a flag with a smaller version of the disk and swastika.
Jarig Bakker, 28 September 2005


Shipping Corporation of India Ltd.

[Shipping Corporation of India Ltd.] image by Ivan Sache, 31 August 2002

The Shipping Corporation of India Ltd. (Mumbai/Bombay)

Saffron flag with a blue chakra placed on a white disc in the middle of the flag.
Ivan Sache
, 31 August 2002


South India Shipping Corp. Ltd.

[South India Shipping Corp. Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

South India Shipping Corp. Ltd., Madras - blue flag, in center white diamond charged with blue "SIS".
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 10 September 2005


Surrendra Overseas Ltd.

[Surrendra Overseas Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Surrendra Overseas Ltd., Calcutta - white field, in center "APV".
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 10 September 2005


Texmaco Ltd.

[Texmaco Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Texmaco Ltd., Calcutta - white flag, blue diamond, white "T".
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 10 September 2005


Thakur Shipping Co., Ltd.

[Thakur Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Thakur Shipping Co., Ltd., Bombay - blue flag, a stylized trident.
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 28 September 2005


Tolani Shipping Co., Ltd.

[Tolani Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by Jarig Bakker

Tolani Shipping Co., Ltd., Bombay - white flag blue top and bottom stripes; red "T".
Source: Loughran (1995)
Jarig Bakker, 28 September 2005

[Tolani Shipping Co., Ltd.] image by Ian MacDonald, 10 April 2011

Tolani Shipping Co. Ltd. The Tolani Group started in 1950 in the construction industry and gradually extended its interests in various activities entering shipping in the 1960s. From 1980 it concentrated on its shipping interests and gradually divested itself of the other interests until today when it is involved in shipping and education with the latter through the Tolani Education Foundation. Lloyds Groups describe it as the Tolani Group of Shipping Companies and earlier there were subsidiary divisions but in 2003 the shipping interests were consolidated under Tolani Shipping Co. Ltd. The flag shown as a logo on their website [it is currently not available being under maintenance] has since 2002 [when it started] shown yellow bands, not blue and they seem to me to be wider with the white occupying about half the field. The Brown editions of Flags and Funnels (1982) and Flags and Funnels (1995) show that the flag forms the funnel band whereas current ships have my version with yellow bands. There thus seems to have been a change but I have funnel records which give the yellow bands version applying to a couple of vessels which were scrapped in 1981 and 1993 respectively which seems to suggest that they have been used for some time without reports reaching Louis Loughran.
Neale Rosanoski, 28 March 2011