Kolkata: A chain of radar stations being set up for India`s coastal security network will be ready along the mainland by the end of 2012 and those in the island territories by next year, a top Indian Coast Guard (ICG) official said on Wednesday.
"Coastal security and sea-based piracy have emerged as concerns that demand rapid capacity and capability building of all maritime forces. What we can do is to enhance our presence in the sea by both naval (forces) as well as the Coast Guard," Indian Coast Guard Director General Vice Admiral MP Muralidharan told media persons here.
"We have vessels which have been patrolling in the ocean and also we have the aircraft in the air which are continuously patrolling."
"We also have a chain of radar stations that have been set up for the entire coastal security network which will be ready at the end of this year along the mainland and early next year it will be ready in our island territories," Muralidharan said.
He said the radar stations will help the Coast Guard enhance surveillance to monitor vessels to counter sea-based piracy.
Stating that the Coast Guard was planning to increase its presence in the sea for safety and welfare of Indian fishermen, he said, "We are looking for more vessels...we are getting more units. In the next five years or so, we will reach some level."
Muralidharan said the Coast Guard was slated to have 150 vessels and over l00 aircraft by 2018.
"As of today, there are over 100 ships in various stages of construction both at the defence public shipyards and private shipyards across the country," he added.
The vice admiral was in the city to commission ICG Ship (ICGS) Rajshree, the first in a series of eight Inshore Patrol Vessels (IPVs) being designed and built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) here.
ICGS Rajshree will be based at Chennai under the administrative and operational control of the Commander, Coast Guard Region (East).