Speed Post News Network
New Delhi : Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on September 25, 2019, called for a proactive coordination among all agencies and stakeholders involved in coastal security to achieve the common goal of national security. He was addressing a gathering at the Commissioning Ceremony of Indian Coast Guard Ship (ICGS) ‘Varaha’ at Chennai, Tamil Nadu.
He exuded confidence that ICGS ‘Varaha’ will further strengthen the Coast Guard fleet in responding to the threats of maritime terrorism, smuggling, and challenges of maritime law enforcement. He hoped that ICGS ’Varaha’ will enhance the surveillance and patrolling capabilities of Indian Coast Guard and reinforce their role as ‘Sentinels of our Seas’. Highlighting PM Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)’, Rajnath said, as a responsible maritime power, oceans have been the Government’s foremost policy priorities.
He described ICGS ’Varaha’ as a fine example of collaboration with industry and ‘Make in India’ where Larsen & Toubro (L&T) shipbuilding has played a very important role in production and maintenance of sea-based assets. He also stressed on the need to ensure availability of world class assets, both commercial vessels & warships, in adequate numbers to achieve maritime supremacy. He said, there is no other way of providing the needed numbers than having a strong and vibrant shipbuilding industry, according to a PIB release.
Appreciating the important role played by private players in the indigenisation of shipbuilding technology, Rajnath urged them to develop naval equipment of stringent standards. He said the Government has taken a conscious decision to encourage other shipyards, including private yards, to enter the specialised field of warship-construction. “ There are not many countries in the world having capability to produce such a wide variety of warships ranging from Fast Attack Craft to Aircraft Carrier,” he added.
Rajnath said that an Indian Naval Indigenisation Plan from 2015-2030, as a guideline document, has been formulated in pursuance to the Government’s vision of ‘Make in India’. He said the document is aimed to enable indigenous development of equipment and systems over the next 15 years. He commended ‘Swachh Sagar Abhiyan’ of Indian Coast Guard in line with ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ saying that Clean oceans are important for India’s Economic prosperity and sustainability. He said, ICGS ‘Varaha’ is capable of carrying Pollution response equipment.
Earlier, ICGS ‘Varaha’, the state-of-the-art offshore patrol vessel, was commissioned into the Coast Guard fleet. It is the fourth among the series of seven ships to be delivered by L&T with features like ultra-advanced navigation, communication sensors and machinery. It will operate from the port of New Mangalore on the West Coast covering Exclusive Economic Zone up to Kanyakumari. ICGS ‘Varaha’ is capable of operating the indigenously-developed Advanced Light Helicopter by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). The ship is well equipped with high speed boats, medical facilities, and modern surveillance systems.