Coast Guard looks for alternative site for radars
New Delhi: The Coast Guard has started looking for an alternative site for deploying its coastal radars in Andaman and Nicobar Islands after the Environment Ministry red-flagged its plans to set them up at Narcondam to save the rare bird 'Hornbill'.
The Coast Guard was planning to set up the radar as part of the coastal security network to keep an eye on the activities along the coastline there.
The search for an alternative place has already begun and the regional Coast Guard officials are working towards finding a strategic site for the purpose, Defence officials said.
The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) had rejected the Defence Ministry proposal to set up a radar site and a power plant on the Narcondam island.
The MoEF had said the government had the option to set up off-shore sites to install such radars but noted that, "There is no such option available for the Hornbill whose survival may get seriously threatened if establishment of proposed radar is allowed on the Narcondam island."
It had also stated that there are only around 350 of this rare species of birds.
As part of the coastal security network, the Coast Guard is installing 46 radars of which 10 would be placed in the island territories of Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep. Six radars are to be put up at Lakshadweep whereas four would be installed in Andamans.
Recently, the Environment Ministry also red-flagged Navy's plans to set up a missile firing range in the Andamans and is also looking for an alternative site to set it up.