'Need seamless comm between ICG, fishermen & admin'

City Police Commissioner Dr P S Harsha, Coast Guard Karnataka Commander DIG S S Dasila and other officials and stakeholders take part in the state-level Maritime Search and Rescue workshop at Indian Coast Guard (ICG) in Panambur, Mangaluru, on Thursday.

Anti-social elements masquerading as fishermen are potential threat to national security and should be weeded out from the seas, Mangaluru  Commissioner of Police Dr P S Harsha stressed on Thursday.

He was speaking at the state-level Maritime Search And Rescue (MSAR) workshop organised at Indian Coast Guard (ICG) in Panambur.

Dr Harsha said there were apprehensions that Rohingyas and Bangladeshis would enter the coastal districts through the sea.

The jetty points and landing points need to be under high organised surveillance. Each boat should be provided with a unique identification number along with a code assigned to each fishermen. Each boat should be traceable, he said.

Dr Harsha felt the need to establish a seamless communication between ICG, fishermen, police and administration. This will help in carrying out maritime search and rescue operations effectively. The commissioner highlighting previous lengthy search and rescue operations reserved special praise for the ICG.

Award for fishermen

Coast Guard Karnataka Commander DIG S S Dasila said the state-level Maritime Search and Rescue Workshop was aimed at fostering an integrated approach with fishing community for enhancing effective cooperation and harness the strength of fishermen.

"The workshop is based on the theme ‘Fishermen are our Friends’. The ICG has also instituted fishing awards for safe fishing," he said. DIG Dasila said that the ICG had saved 166 lives in 2019 so far.

"A total of 32 lives were saved in Goa and Karnataka coasts, during cyclone ‘Kyarr’. As many as 608 people were safely evacuated during floods in August in Uttara Kannada and Dakshina Kannada districts," he recollected.

Dasila agreed that preventing the illegal immigration through sea route was a challenge. The ICG has been making efforts to combat the same, he added.

Commandant R K Sharma, Deputy Commandants Gautam Soni and Deepika Dhiman were present.

Representatives from NMPT, district administration and fishermen associations participated in the workshop.

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