Mangaluru: The second state-level Maritime Search and Rescue Workshop for Karnataka, part of the nationwide derive by Indian Coast Guard (ICG) for effective management of Search and Rescue (SAR) over the Indian Search and Rescue Region (ISRR), was organized by Headquarters, No 3 Coast Guard District (Karnataka) on November 7.
The workshop was inaugurated by Dr P S Harsha, IPS, Commissioner of Police Mangaluru in the presence of Commander Coast Guard Karnataka DIG SS Dasila, TM with the theme “Fishermen are our Friends - Meenugararu Namma Snehitaru”.
In his inaugural address, Dr Harsha emphasised on effective communication network among stakeholders for implementing successful SAR services. He also recalled the fundamental humanitarian obligation of assistance to be provided to any person in distress at sea, and the necessity to provide SAR services aligned with international standards. Dr Harsha welcomed the workshop, recalling the necessity to strengthen and enhance cooperation among various agencies to for effect SAR capabilities in AoR. The SAR Workshop was attended by representatives from all stakeholders within the state of Karnataka.
The Workshop was structured in sessions according to the theme, including; indigenous technical tools available to fishing communities for safe fishing at sea and fishing awards instituted by Indian Coast Guard. The workshop recognised and acknowledged the contribution of the state and district administration along with all stakeholders. All participants discussed existing policies and new strategies in terms of India’s Search and Rescue capabilities.
Speaking on the occasion, DIG SS Dasila, TM Commander Coast Guard Karnataka hailed the stakeholders for keeping the coast of the state safe for the seafarers, by rendering selfless service. Given the vast search and rescue region of 4.6 million square kilometres and with the multiplicity of stakeholders Coast Guard Commander Karnataka said “Safety for Fishermen: The Way Forward”. We recognize fishermen as an important subset of Maritime SAR at sea. We, the Coast Guard ascribes the highest importance to the safety and security of Indian fishermen further providing assistance to Indian fishermen at sea while they are in distress through regular patrolling. Various activities related to fishermen safety are implemented by Coast Guard through Community Interaction Programmes (CIP) including to educate fishermen among other issues, on the perils of cross border fishing. For better accessibility, the Coast Guard has provided a toll-free telephone number 1554 for search and rescue assistance to fishermen at sea. The fishermen who operate with us at our neighbourhood seas as our friends act as eyes and ears to provide situational awareness about threats.
The ICG is responsible for executing /coordinating SAR missions in the ISRR with Director General Indian Coast Guard (DGICG) being the National Maritime SAR Coordinating Authority (NMSARCA). Under NMSARCA, the ISRR of India is divided into three areas with Maritime Rescue Coordination Centres (MRCCs) located at Mumbai, Chennai and Port Blair. There are 16 Maritime Rescue Sub Centres (MRSCs) further, Maritime Rescue Sub Sub Centres (MRSSCs) operate under these MRCCs. The 42 multi-mission Indian Coast Guard Stations located along the coast, deploys state of the art ships and aircraft to provide SAR coverage in ISRR.
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