Chennai, 1 December (UH). Indian Coast Guard conducted a two-day maiden Coastal Security Conference (CoSC) under the aegis of Colombo Security Conclave (CSC) from 01-02 Dec 22 at Chennai with the participation of Coast Guards from 04 member countries viz. India, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Mauritius. Further, the representatives from Bangladesh, an observer of CSC, also participated.
Shri Giridhar Aramane, IAS, Defence Secretary, Government of India inaugurated the Maiden Coastal Security Conference (CoSC) – 2022. The Defence Secretary in his address to the gathering quoted the 5 basic principles to address issues of Maritime Security, as given by the Hon’ble PM of India, Sh. Narendra Modi, which are removing barriers from legitimate Maritime Trade; Settle Maritime disputes by peaceful means through International Law; mitigating Natural Disasters and Maritime threats; preserving and protecting of Maritime Environment; and encouraging responsible Maritime Connectivity and increasing maritime trade through the creation of sustainable infrastructure. Defence Secretary highlighted the need to address common issues pertaining to maritime safety and Security, countering terrorism, transnational organized crime, cyber security, protection of critical coastal infrastructure and disaster relief. He also called upon the participating countries for enhanced collaboration between Coast Guards and Maritime Law Enforcement agencies. Defence Secretary commended the Indian Coast Guard for establishing itself as a strong professional force in just over four decades of its creation and collaborating with partner agencies in ensuring safe, secure and clean seas.
Sh. Vikram Misri, IFS, Deputy National Security Advisor also addressed the conference and highlighted the importance of Coast Guards, which due to their non-belligerent, non-escalators and non-aggressive construct have greater roles, to achieve interoperability and enhanced cooperation towards the shared paradigm of safer seas, which has been India’s vision of Safety and Growth for all (SAGAR) in the maritime domain. Deputy NSA also emphasized on the collaboration amongst all Coast Guard functionaries for enhancing regional maritime security.
Director General VS Pathania, PTM, TM, Director General Indian Coast Guard welcomed the Chief Guest, International and National participants/observers/ stakeholders. The Director General, during his address, highlighted the importance of CoSC-like platforms for arriving at a collective consensus for ensuring Maritime Safety and Security.
The theme of the Coastal Security Conference -2022 was “Collaborative Efforts for Coastal Security”. Heads of Marine Police of each state and UTs, and representatives from other National and State stakeholder Ministries also participated. During the conference the presentation on the topics of Coastal Security Threats & Collaborative Response, International Maritime Law & Role of Empowered Agencies, Technological Solutions for Coastal Security, Realisation of Blue Economy through Coastal Security and Envisaged Domains for Cooperation to address Region Coastal Security Concerns and contemporary issues were discussed.
The coming together of Indian Ocean Region countries in the conference indicated the development of sub-regionalism on a common maritime and security platform and is significant in a wider global context of progressing the prominence of Coast Guard to Coast Guard cooperation.