INDIAN COAST GUARD CELEBRATES INDEPENDENCE DAY, HOISTS TRICOLOUR AT 100 ISLANDS - The Daily Guardian
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INDIAN COAST GUARD CELEBRATES INDEPENDENCE DAY, HOISTS TRICOLOUR AT 100 ISLANDS

Ashish Singh

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This year to commemorate the 75th anniversary celebrations of India’s Independence and to foster patriotism amongst people, Indian Coast Guard took the initiative to hoistthe National flag at selected 100 inhabited and uninhabited islands across India. Out of these, 36 islands are on West coast while 25 islands are on east coast of the mainland. The tricolour was also unfurled simultaneously at 24 islands of Andaman & Nicobar and at 15 islands of Lakshadweep & Minicoy.

As part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, ICG has also conducted interaction programmes with fishermen, tree plantation, cyclathon, walkathon, essay competition, drawing competition, quiz competition and motor cycle rallies at various Coast Guard stations pan India to evoke the feeling of patriotism amongst the populace.Indian Coast Guard is the fourth largest Coast Guard in the World. This fine force entrusted with the duties of keeping our maritime frontier “Clean, Safe and Secure”, comprises of 157 Surface units and 66 air assets. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Indian Coast Guard has added 7new generation ships to its fleet in last one year. To its credit, the force has saved 467 lives at sea in last one year and 10210 lives since inception which translates into saving of three precious lives every two days. In addition, 339 people were saved in last one year and overall12934 personnel have been rescued till date by the service during various ‘Aid to Civil Authority’ operations viz., Assistance provided during various Floods, Cyclones and other natural calamities including the recent floods in Maharashtra and Karnataka.

One of the primary duties of the Indian Coast Guard is prevention of smuggling through maritime routes in our Area of Responsibility. The 24×7 hawk’s vigil of the Indian Coast ensured seizure of drugs and contraband worth more than Rs. 11255 Crore since inception of whichmore than Rs.4500Crore worth drugs and contrabands were seized in the last one year alone. In addition, ICG till date has also apprehended more than 13305 crew and over 1563 boats involved in illegal activities in our Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) with 40 foreign crew with 07 boats apprehended in last one year, thereby claiming food security and economic sovereignty of our country in the EEZ.Despite the restrictions imposed by the ‘COVID-19’ pandemic, Indian Coast Guard has maintained 365x24x7 vigil in the Exclusive Economic Zone, by deploying about 45-50 ships and 10-12 aircraft daily for surveillance. The ‘Preventive and Measured Response’ stance of operations ensured that more than 3000 fishing boats with about 24,000 fishermen were escorted to safe harbours during the passage of 04 cyclones viz.,Nivar, Burevi, Tauktae and Yaas in last one year, thus minimising the loss of lives and property at sea.

In consonance with the PM’s vision of ‘SAGAR’ – Security And Growth of All in the Region and ‘Neighbourhood First’, Indian Coast Guard created maritime history by dousing a raging fire onboard the Very Large Crude Carrier Motor Tanker New Diamond with about 2.7 Lakh Metric Tonnes of crude oil off Sri Lanka, thereby averting a major ecological disaster in the region. Further, ICG also provided Pollution Response assistance to Mauritius during the grounding of Merchant Vessel Wakashio and provided 30 Tons of Pollution Response equipment in addition to training of the Mauritius Crew. In another major assistance to Sri Lanka, ICG immediately mobilised03 ships and 01 aircraft for fire-fighting and pollution response towards major fire post explosion onboard container vessel MV X-Press Pearl off Colombo on 25th May 21. The distressed Singapore flag vessel was carrying dangerous cargo in 1486 containers. ICG ships in coordination with Sri Lanka Naval/Coast Guard ships undertook fire-fighting using external fire-fighting system braving the odds of rough weather and averted environmental disaster by mitigating Oil spill with preventive pollution control measures.In line with another major ICG Charter of Maritime Environment Protection,ICG devoted 225 ship days and 388 aircraft hours for protection and conservation of 3.49lakhs Olive Ridley turtles along the coast of Odisha and also protected various other endangered marine species. Recently, in one of the biggest seizures of endangered marine species under Wild Life Protection Act 1972, ICG seized about 1200 Kgs of Sea Cucumber at Mandapam.

ICG is continuously collaborating with littoral countries to combat transnational maritime crimes and enhance maritime safety in its area of responsibility as well as in the Indian Ocean Region. The service is also working in close coordination with Central and State agencies to put in place a robust Coastal Security mechanism. Indian Coast Guard is maintaining an effective surveillance in EEZ by deploying of assets 24×7. In addition, continuous close coast surveillance is being maintained through Coastal Surveillance Network consisting of Radars, Electro-optic sensors etc. set up at 46 sites along the coast. To ensure near gap free surveillance of the entire coastline, additional 38RADAR Stations, 04 Mobile Surveillance System and 13 sites of Gulf of Kutch and Khambat are being setup and integrated in Phase-II.ICG’s relentless efforts towards fleet augmentation has led to contract for supply of 16 Advanced Light Helicopters (Mk-III version), which was signed with M/s HAL, Bangalore. These helicopters are capable of surveillance, interdiction, SAR and Pollution Response missions and are fitted with state-of-the-art equipment for effectively executing the maritime roles. ICG has accepted the first four Helicopters from HAL till date and two Helicopters each have been based at the strategically located air squadrons at Porbandar and Bhubaneswar. Recognising the need to strengthen the Maritime SAR mechanism under the aegis of ICG, GoI/MoD has accorded Approval-in-Principle(AIP) for setting-up of 29 Maritime Rescue Sub Centers (MRSCs) which will enhance the monitoring and coordination of incidents at sea in Indian Search and Rescue Region (ISRR) and augment our capabilities towards provision of a robust SAR system in line with IMO and International SAR convention.

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Defence

‘ARMY CAN MEET ANY CHALLENGE TO SAFEGUARD COUNTRY’

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The Army is fully prepared to meet any challenge like the use of drones and social media by adversaries to safeguard the country, said Commandant of Chennai-based Officers Training Academy (OTA) Lieutenant General M K Das. Lt Gen Das, who is also the colonel of the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) regiment, said the situation in J&K is getting better with the Army and other security agencies working together to stamp out terrorism. Speaking to media on the sidelines of the maiden attestation parade of 460 new recruits of the 126th batch after a successful 40-week training period at Dansal here, he said the Indian Army is aware of the challenges and prepared to give a befitting response to the enemies of the nation.

Talking about the need to introduce special training courses for soldiers in the aftermath of the developments in Afghanistan, he said, “Our training is very contemporary as it caters for all the contingencies and unforeseen situations. My young soldiers, who have taken the oath to defend the constitution and the country, will live up to all the challenges. One of the unique things of this regiment (JAKLI) is all our troops hail from J&K and Ladakh. They have ingrained quality to be security conscious much more than others.” Lt Gen Das said, “All the situations unfolding in the country or in our neighbourhood, the JAKLI regiment will continue to excel and be the lead agency in the fight against terrorism.” Asked about the challenges posed by the use of drones to hit targets and deliver weapons and narcotics from across the LoC and International Border, he said a capsule course on anti-drone measures has been introduced. “On Army Day on 15 January, our chief took the threat seriously and our soldiers are being prepared to deal with the challenge in a better way.” During recruitment training, Lt Gen Das said that besides the arms handing and exercises, thrust is also given on science and technology, cybersecurity and other new challenges. He said the misuse of social media by “anti-national” elements is a reality and the new recruits are being trained in cybersecurity during their basic and orientation courses.

On attempts by Pakistan to mislead the youth of J&K, Lt Gen Das said, “The youth of J&K is showing keenness to be a part of the regiment which is a message to those who think they can mislead our youth. Joining the regiment is the best way to serve the nation, the youth live like a family and there is complete communal harmony.” He said the regiment is increasing the number of local youth from Ladakh and would also go for recruitment in J&K to provide an opportunity to the local youth to become part of this regiment. Asked about his message to the misguided youth, he said, “J&K is the crown of India but if I focus as a soldier, I feel they (misguided youth) have not understood their country… the situation has not gone out of hand and the Army has kept its window open to allow them to surrender and join the national mainstream.”

He added, “We have a unit of 162 Infantry Territorial Army who are former militants but have become upright soldiers.” Lt Gen Das said the Army and other security agencies are working in close coordination and the situation in J&K is getting better and the “day is not far when this region will make our country proud.”

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Defence

SOUTHERN NAVAL COMMAND OBSERVES INTERNATIONAL COASTAL CLEAN-UP DAY IN KOCHI

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The Southern Naval Command observed International Coastal Clean-up Day on Saturday with a focus on mangrove plantation and clearance of plastic/non-biodegradable waste along with waterfront areas in and around Kochi, said a press release from the Ministry of Defence.

Pursuant to the global campaign of keeping coastlines clean, more than 600 Naval personnel and the families of Southern Naval Command undertook clearance of plastic and non-biodegradable waste at different locations spread across the city, coastal areas such as Fort Kochi beach, Thevara waterfront, Willingdon Island, Cherai beach, Bolgatty and around 2 km stretch of the Venduruthy channel while restoring around 1 lakh sqm of mangroves to the pristine condition. In addition, 80 mangrove saplings were also planted along the Venduruthy channel. Similar coastal cleanup drives and lectures/webinars/competitions emphasising protection of the coastal and marine environment were undertaken with the enthusiastic participation of the Naval community at other outstation Naval units located at Lonavala, Jamnagar, Chilka, Coimbatore, Goa, Ezhimala and Mumbai.

Being the Training Command of the Indian Navy, the Southern Naval Command has always been at the vanguard in promoting environmental conservation activities both at the Command Headquarters, Kochi as well as at Naval stations spread across the country.

Mandated to oversee naval training, the Southern Naval Command has conceptualised and implemented a variety of green initiatives. Keeping environmental preservation as one of the Key Result Areas, the Command has constantly endeavoured to motivate young officer and sailor trainees of the Indian Navy to imbibe the habit of protecting mother nature as part of their grooming efforts in preparing them to become responsible future Naval leaders and dependable citizens of India.

Particular attention has also been given to create more awareness among the families and more importantly the children.

During the last three years, the Command has adopted a multi-dimensional approach towards conservation of the environment and implementation of energy conservation methods.

To highlight a few, the personnel of the Command were actively involved in the rejuvenation of 4.5-km-long Venduruthy Channel near Kochi Naval base, creating awareness in and around Naval establishments.

Efforts were undertaken to enhance green cover by conducting mass plantation drives which included planting more than 75,000 trees, using the fast-growing Miyawaki forestation method. In addition, regular coastal clean-up drives, mangrove plantation drives, in-house handling and recycling of bio and non-biodegradable waste, adopting efficient energy and water-saving methods etc were also undertaken. The Command has also earnestly endeavoured to continue all the efforts for protecting and conserving the environment and natural resources. Towards achieving the same, the Command has implemented a Green Initiative and Environment Conservation Roadmap with a prime focus on Carbon footprint reduction.

With the personal involvement of Vice Admiral Anil Kumar Chawla, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command is committed to creating a clean, green and healthy environment in line with the visionary environment conservation policies of the Govt of India. On the occasion, Adv M Anilkumar, Mayor, Kochi Municipal Corporation and staff also participated in Kochi.

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Defence

IAF TO HOLD AIR SHOW OVER DAL LAKE IN SRINAGAR ON 26 SEPT

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An air show will be held here on 26 September where IAF’s skydiving team Akash Ganga and Suryakiran Aerobatic and Display Team and paramotor flying will manoeuvre the skies over the famous Dal Lake, officials informed on Saturday.

The air show will be organised by the Air Force Station Srinagar and the Jammu and Kashmir administration as part of the ongoing celebrations commemorating ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’, they said. The main aim of the exercise—under the theme ‘Give Wings to Your Dream’—is to motivate the youth of the valley to join the Indian Air Force (IAF) and to promote tourism in the region, the officials said.

The event will be flagged off Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha at the Sher-e-Kashmir International Conference Centre (SKICC) overlooking Dal Lake.

More than 3,000 college and school students are expected to participate in the programme to witness the impressive manoeuvres of the IAF, which will motivate them to dream about a career in the force and in the aviation sector, the officials said. “The show will also develop passion among the students to give wings to their dreams. Along with the students, 700 teachers will also be present at the venue,” they added.

During the demonstration, students will also be familiarised with the new technological advancements achieved and incorporated by the IAF while flying aircraft in the sky over the world-famous Dal Lake, the officials said. Stalls will be established at SKICC where students will be familiarised with the achievements of the Air Force, employment opportunities in the IAF, recruitment rules and eligibility criteria, they added.

Srinagar-based PRO Defence Col Emron Musavi said the display will include flypast by various aircraft of the IAF. The spectators would also get to witness paramotor flying and IAF’s skydiving team Akash Ganga in action. ‘Ambassadors of IAF’, Suryakiran Aerobatic Display Team, will be performing in the valley after a gap of 14 years, he said. Col Musavi said the symphony orchestra of the IAF would also be performing at the event. The event would also consist of a photo exhibition depicting the history of the

IAF, he said. 

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Defence

ARMY ORGANISES EXHIBITION IN JAIPUR TO COMMEMORATE INDIA’S VICTORY IN 1971 WAR

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JAIPUR : South Western Command of the Indian Army on Saturday organised an exhibition showcasing defence equipment at Chitrakoot Stadium in Jaipur to mark the 50th anniversary of India’s victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war.

Speaking to ANI, an Indian army official said, “We have displayed the defence equipment in this exhibition to make people aware of the Indian army achievements. We want to motivate the youth by showcasing these types of equipment.” “Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, these events had been started to make people aware of Indian Arm Forces. So, we are also continuing the move by organising these kinds of events,” he added.

Further, he said that India’s victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war is memorable for all the Indians, so, every citizen should be aware of this war.  

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Defence

BRO makes history, appoints woman Army officer in-charge of road construction unit

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The Border Roads Organisation (BRO) has appointed a woman Army officer for the first as the Officer Commanding of its 75 road construction company (RCC) in Uttarakhand, the Defence Ministry said on Sunday.

The three platoon commanders under Major Aaina, Captain Anjana, AEE (Civ) Bhawana Joshi and AEE (Civ) Vishnumaya K became the first women RCC. The appointments were made on August 30.

BRO on Sunday recalled the list of women officers who were assigned higher leadership roles in the organisation in the current year.

According to a statement issued by the Defence Ministry, BRO has inducted a large number of women into its workforce over the years, right from officers to the level of commercial pilot license holders. “In this regard, a General Reserve Engineer Force (GREF) officer EE (Civ) Vaishali S Hiwase took over the reins of 83 Road Construction Company on April 28, employed on an important Indo-China road connecting Munisairi-Bughdiar-Milam, in an area full of adversity and challenges. The lady officer has taken control and is leading the charge with meticulous execution of her tasks,” the statement said.

“The BRO created history again on 30 August when Major Aaina of Project Shivalik took charged as Officer Commanding, 75 Road Construction Companies (RCC) at Pipalkoti in Chamoli district in Uttarakhand. She is the first Indian Army Engineer Officer to command a road construction company. Not only this, all three platoon commanders under her, Captain Anjana, AEE (Civ) Bhawana Joshi and AEE (Civ) Vishnumaya K are lady officers and they have together created a first-ever women RCC. The Border Roads plans to make four such all women-led RCCs, two each in North Eastern and Western Sectors.”

As India celebrates 75 Years of Azaadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, it also celebrates the ongoing efforts of our Nation towards women empowerment. Women today have started assuming their rightful, equal place as the frontrunners in nation-building and representatives of our strong national character, the statement read.

Over the last six decades, in a graduated and steady manner, the BRO has increased the number of women employed in various roles and duties of road construction. A consolidated effort is being made to empower them by giving them authority and responsibilities to undertake work independently. These women have become symbols of Nari Shakti in their respective areas.

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Defence

IN FIRST FOREIGN VISIT AFTER TAKING OVER AS CDS, GEN BIPIN RAWAT TO VISIT RUSSIA, US

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In his first visit abroad after taking over as the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Bipin Rawat will be visiting Russia and the US.

Rawat took over his new office as CDS on 31 December 2019, and since then has been declining foreign invitations for focusing on the new assignment of integrating the defence forces as a combined fighting force. “There is a conference of the CDS-rank officers of the Shanghai Cooperation Agreement member countries. China and Pakistan are also part of this grouping,” senior defence officials said.

The CDS conference would be focusing on addressing the regional security issues and Afghanistan is also likely to come up for discussion, they said.

The CDS would also witness the activities of the respective armed forces taking part in the SCO peace mission drills being held in Russia. Indian Army and Air Force are also taking part in the exercise there.

The visit will take place in the coming week and soon after return from Russia, Rawat would be leaving for the US for meeting his counterpart and other American military leadership at the Pentagon.

The two countries have been coming closer militarily in the last few years and have been holding multiple military exercises and hardware cooperation.

The Indian military saw a major change in senior-level structures under the Narendra Modi government as the focus is now on the theatrisation of the fighting forces and bringing in more capabilities and jointness among the three services. 

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