By Our Special Correspondent
September. Indian Coast Guard (ICG) is all set to augment its presence in the Indian waters. ICG will double its strength to about 150 surface vessels by 2018, as per the government approval in its 2012- 17 five-year plan. Things seem to be moving ahead for the force. Operational capabilities, deployment of forces and preparation for the future challenges are the priority for the government. It is also time to introspect the standards achieved in the wide spectrum of its responsibilities. Indian Coast Guard is taking the small steps which will eventually be giant leaps in the Indian security’s changing landscape.
While inaugurating the 34th Coast Guard Commanders Conference Minister of Defence Manohar Parrikar, said that India’s unique geographical disposition affords us a unique leverage in the Indian Ocean, one that must be pursued for our national objectives and more importantly one that needs to be safeguarded diligently.
The minister called for seamless synergy between Indian Coast Guard and the Navy at all levels as he expressed concern over the safety of vital installations like ports and shipyards and felt that the need of the hour warranted both services to work in close cooperation and understanding. He said that India’s unique geographical disposition affords us a unique leverage in the Indian Ocean, one that must be pursued for our national objectives and more importantly one that needs to be safeguarded diligently.
The conference was attended by senior officers of the Ministry of Defence, and Indian Coast Guard (ICG) which included the Director General and the Additional Director General. Vice-Admiral H C S Bisht , Director General , Coast guard informed that all regional commanders had put forth the roadmap for future and discussed various policy and strategic issues with respect to operations, acquisitions, human resources, training etc. A brain storming session which lasted for 3 days, carved out a futuristic vision for the service and also determined the means to overcome the challenges by best utilisation of the available resources at disposal.