VIZAG: Maritime nations need to cooperate and collaborate with each other to counter the threats of terrorism and piracy, opined Indian Navy chief of naval staff admiral RK Dhowan. He stated that all the nations in the Indian Ocean region, were working towards achieving a regional level framework to deal with these threats.
Addressing the media conference organised as part of the ongoing International Fleet Review 2016 (IFR-16) here Friday, Dhowan admitted that the threat of maritime terrorism and piracy has increased over the seas. "The challenges in the maritime domain are wide and various, but we are confident to deal with them in collaboration with fellow maritime nations," he said.
The maritime nations have suggested for forming three working groups in three specific areas of anti-piracy, information exchange and interoperability, and also humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. The recently held Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) and Conclave of Naval Chiefs took stock of the situation and suggested for a tangible framework to take it forward by including other challenges like piracy.
Dhowan felt that security, stability and safety of the global waters is a collective responsibility of the navies around the world and no single navy is robust enough to ensure safety and security of global commons on its own.
Therefore, the maritime nations need wide cooperation and it is the responsibility of the Men in White should come up with cooperative mechanisms. "The presence of over 50 nations at IFR emphasises the significance for such events which provide a platform for working in this direction," he added.
The admiral said that the Indian Navy has also drawn up a plan for indigenisation and self-reliance. "We are ceaselessly working towards achieving the objective, in partnership with both the public sector and private sector in the country. Our endeavour is to increase our indigenous content in the fleet," he added. India is keen on indigenisation where about 46 ships and submarines are under construction in India. Further, the Indian Navy will be showcasing its clean and green efforts by looking for alternate fuels like the US which is far ahead in this regard.
For the first time, the Indian Navy would be showcasing its warship which runs completely on biofuel. He felt that this would lead to larger combatants operating in ecologically sensitive zones by switching to the green fuel.
The Indian Navy chief has confirmed that the indigenous nuclear submarine INS Arihant will not feature at the ongoing International Fleet Review. However, he did not elaborate further. INS Arihant is India's first indigenous nuclear submarine and is presently in the final stages of sea trials. Commenting on the P75 India project, he said that the construction of six additional submarines under the project is still under consideration of the Indian government and the navy is awaiting for the government's decision in this regard. The P75 India project is envisaged as the next step towards complete indigenisation of design and manufacture of submarines in India.
Nearly 100 ships including 71 Indian Navy ships and submarines and 24 foreign naval ships besides merchant naval ships, survey ships and Coast Guard are participating in the Fleet Review to be held on Saturday off Visakhapatnam beach. About 60 aircraft are also participating.