Fourth largest coast guard force today has 158 ships, 70 aircraft
New Delhi, Jan. 31 (Delhi Crown): The Indian Coast Guard (ICJ) is celebrating its 46th Raising Day on Tuesday.
From a modest beginning with just seven surface platforms in 1978, the ICG has over the past 45 years grown into a formidable force with 158 ships and 70 aircraft in its inventory, and is likely to achieve targeted force levels of 200 surface platforms and 80 aircraft by 2025.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Indian Coast Guard has added five new generation ships and eight Advanced Light Helicopters (ALHs) to its fleet in last one year.
As the fourth largest Coast Guard in the world, the ICG has played a significant role in securing the Indian Coasts and enforcing regulations in the Maritime Zones of India.
To its credit, the force has saved 1226 lives at sea in last one year and 11082 lives since inception which translates into saving of one precious life at sea every second day. In addition, ICG also saved 339 people in last one year and overall 12,934 personnel have been rescued till date.
One of the primary duties of the ICG is prevention of smuggling through maritime routes in our area of responsibility. The hawk eye vigil of the ICG ensured seizure of drugs and contraband worth more than Rs. 11,924 crore since inception of which more than Rs. 3950 crore worth drugs and contrabands were seized in the last one year alone.
In addition, ICG till date has also apprehended more than 13354 crew and over 1568 boats involved in illegal activities in our Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). A total of 40 foreign crew with 07 boats were apprehended in 2021, thereby asserting maritime security and economic sovereignty of our country in our waters.
ICG is also collaborating with littoral countries to combat transnational maritime crimes and enhance maritime safety in its area of responsibility and in the Indian Ocean Region.
In keeping with the nation’s vision of ‘SAGAR’ & ‘Neighbourhood First’, ICG has nurtured professional relationships across oceans and established meaningful ties with countries in the Indian Ocean Region for Ocean Peacekeeping.
ICG has successfully averted major ecological disasters and emerged as the “First Responder” in the region by undertaking major firefighting & pollution response operation off Sri Lanka coast, the most recent being onboard Chemical carrier MV X-Press Pearl, namely Sagar Aaraksha-II. Such actions of ICG have garnered immense goodwill and trust of our littoral friends, as also reflected India’s international stature as a strong maritime nation.
President of India, Vice-President, Prime Minister and Defence Minister congratulated the ICG on completion of 45 years of yeoman service to the nation and appreciated the remarkable role played by the service in pursuit of the nation’s interests in the Maritime Zones.