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Indian Defence Minister reviews coastal security measures

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NEW DELHI (PTI): Defence Minister A K Antony reviewed the progress on various steps and actions taken to enhance coastal security.

In a meeting to review the progress and implementation of measures taken to strengthen coastal security apparatus on Wednesday, Antony said the Navy and Coast Guard have both experienced an unprecedented enhancement in their capabilities.

"Defence Minister acknowledged the action taken for installation of 46 Coastal Static Radars including 36 in Mainland and 10 in Island territories would help in identification and monitoring of maritime traffic," the Defence Ministry said in a release.

He said a seamless and integrated approach by all stakeholders is essential for a strong coastal security and emphasised that fishermen in coastal states are the "eyes and ears" for the task and "they have to be made as an integral part of all our security planning."

In the meeting, the Director General of Shipping confirmed that registration of dhows is being done under existing laws.

He informed that directions have been given to all compliant ports that information on the dhows be given to Navy and Coast Guard for monitoring and surveillance purposes.

"Separately, the DG, Shipping has also initiated consultation with coastal state governments for delegating the work regarding registration of all fishing boats," he said.

The Navy also made a presentation regarding actions taken by Defence Ministry till date on coastal security.

National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon, Cabinet Secretary Ajit Seth and Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma besides Coast Guard DG Vice Admiral Anurag Thapliyal were also present at the meeting.

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