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APRIL 2016 ISSUE

Force Magazine

Keeping Up with the Times

Indian Coast Guard is on a path of expansion by augmenting its surface and air assets
 

A FORCE Report

The role of the coast guard has increased significantly in the last few years. Indian Coast Guard has increased its fleet strength to 113 vessels and 64 aircraft compared to 61 vessels and 46 aircraft in 2008. Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has several surface platforms including 50 ships, 45 interceptor boats and 18 air cushion vehicles (hovercraft). In an expanding organisation like the ICG, procurement of vessels is an ongoing process. The acquisition of ships and boats are carried out keeping in view the threat perceptions, strategic concerns and operational requirements. There has been a significant acquisition of ships / vessels for coast guard in recent years. Last year, 34 coastal police stations were operationalised in seven coastal states and Union Territories including Goa, West Bengal, Lakshdweep, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Puducherry and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

The ICG has a total strength of 11,474 personnel in various ranks. The ICG acts on actionable inputs provided by various national and state intelligence agencies. According to government records, ICG conducted 120 operations from 1 January 2012 to 15 July 2015.

The government, after conducting the vulnerability/gap analysis along the coastline of the coastal States/Union Territories, has formulated a Coastal Security Scheme (CSS) with a view to strengthen security of the coastline of the country. Under Phase-I of the CSS, a total number of 73 Coastal Police Stations, 97 Check-Posts, 58 Out-Posts and 30 Barracks were established in all the coastal States/UTs. Similarly, 131 Coastal Police Stations, 60 Jetties and 10 Marine Operation Centers have been sanctioned to all the coastal States/UTs under Phase-II of the CSS.

In December 2015, ICG had released the Indian Register of Shipping – Coast Guard (IRS-CG) Rules in New Delhi. These rules will facilitate design, construction and trials of ICG ships meeting international standards. The IRS has been involved with construction of a majority of Coast Guard ships. The services of IRS are also being utilised by the Coast Guard during refit of ships. The IRS-CG Rules were initially formulated and released in 2008. The rules have been revised based on experience gained in ship building by the ICG and IRS. With emphasis on ‘Make in India’ by the government, these rules will help in supporting indigenous ship building in India, with prominence on excellence in design and quality construction of ICG ships.

Indian Coast Guard ships and helicopters during operations
Indian Coast Guard ships and helicopters during operations

 
 
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