Director General of the Indian Coast Guard(ICG) Vice-Admiral M P Muraleedharan has said that transnational concerns like piracy, human trafficking, drugs and arms smuggling are on the rise, along with the encroachment in maritime zones.
He was addressing the passing-out parade of the 54th batch of assistant commandants at the Coast Guard District Headquarters, Fort Kochi, on Friday.
The admiral pointed out that, while maritime terror has proven that the seas unite, they are also exploited often to advance the agenda of anti-national elements.
He hoped that the training and experience will enable the commandants to tackle the emerging challenges. The ICG is expected to grow incrementally to achieve a force level of 150 surface platforms and 100 air assets by 2018, he said. The number of Coast Guard stations will be increased to 42 by the end of the year.
As many as 33 assistant commandants of the 54th batch, including officers of the women’s batch, passed out of the Coast Guard Training Centre. Vice-Admiral Muralidharan, reviewed the passing-out parade. The ‘Sword of Honour’, for standing first in the overall order of merit, was awarded to assistant commandant Satish Kumar.
The 11-week law and operations course for coast guards comprise a wide range of subjects which include maritime law and its enforcement, search and rescue operations, fisheries monitoring, control and surveillance, and prevention and control of marine pollution.
The parade was attended by Inspector General SPS Basra, commander Coast Guard (region west), and DIG Satish Chandran, commander of district headquarters number 4.