The Philippine government is assisting 21 Filipino mariners who were abandoned by their employer at a port in southeastern India more than three months ago.

The Filipinos were aboard their vessel, which is a Liberian-flagged bulk carrier, when their Greek employer abandoned them and the vessel at Kakinada Port in India in June, The Filipino Times reported.

The sailors have been stuck on the ship for more than three months and have requested the assistance of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) in facilitating their repatriation and in collecting their salaries.

In a statement, the DFA said it has directed the Philippine Embassy in New Delhi to assist the stranded men. After he was informed of the situation on Friday, foreign affairs secretary Alan Peter Cayetano instructed the Embassy to send Consular officers to Kakinada port.

Cayetano has also instructed the DFA Office of Migrant Workers Affairs to request assistance from the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration to ensure that the company in Manila which hired the mariners will facilitate their repatriation and the payment of their salaries.