To review the country’s maritime preparedness against another 26/11-style attack, the Indian Navy along with the Coast Guard commenced the largest coastal defence exercise off the Indian Coast on Tuesday. Codenamed “Sea Vigil 2019”, the two-day exercise will cover the entire 7,516.6 km coastline and Exclusive Economic Zone of the country.
Teams of different agencies have been deployed in all coastal districts to undertake security audit of vulnerable locations such as fish-landing centres, intermediate ports, lighthouses, coastal police stations, control rooms and operations centres, a defence statement said.
Nearly 150 ships, 40 aircraft and a number of other strategic assets of the Navy and Coast Guard have been deployed. “The exercise aims to comprehensively and holistically validate the efficacy of the measures taken since the Mumbai terror attack,” PTI quoted Navy spokesperson Captain DK Sharma as saying.
The main goal of this large-scale exercise is to test the overall security of the coastal regions and their preparedness in thwarting an attack by infiltration through the sea route.
“A wide range of contingencies, including simulated attacks on vital installations and assets along the coastline, will be exercised to assess the response, coordination and information sharing between agencies,” it said.
The exercise is being conducted under the aegis of Commander-in-Chief, Coastal Defence, Southern Naval Command, Kochi and is being monitored from the Joint Operations Centre, Kochi.
In the last ten years, the Coast Guard has carried out 347 operations based on intelligence inputs and 180 coastal security exercises, which include Sagar Kavach, a biannual exercise to test the preparedness of coastal security agencies.