Post 26/11, Indian Coast Guard strengthens base in Gujarat
Following the Mumbai terror attacks, the Indian Coast Guard has decided to set up their North Western Region base in Gujarat with its headquarters in Gandhinagar. What's more! To beef up security, 'Vijaya', a modern patrolling ship equipped with an onboard helicopter has already been re-based from Mumbai to Porbandar permanently to defend Gujarat's sea coast.
It may be recalled that the terrorists had used a crawler-M V Kuber to launch terror attacks in Mumbai using Porbandar waters.
The move is part of Gujarat being turned into a North Western Region for Indian Coast Guards as sanctioned by the Central government. Earlier, Gujarat coast used to come under the jurisdiction of Western Region headquartered out of Mumbai.
"The Porbandar-based Indian Coast Guard had a longstanding demand of a big ship to protect the area ever since MV Kuber boat sailed out of here. Finally the demand has been fulfilled with Porbandar getting a modern patrolling ship 'Vijaya' that has been re-based from Mumbai and will now operate permanently from here," said a defence spokesperson.
According to the official, the North Western Region will now be headed by an officer of the rank of IG and will soon witness expansion in terms of manpower as well as equipment.
Meanwhile, the ship 'Vijaya', which used to visit Porbandar coast, will be the first big ship based out of Gujarat. The vessel carries a helicopter on board, apart from a pollution response equipment to fight oil spills on sea as well as a mini operation theatre for immediate first aid and treatment to the rescued victims at sea.
Armed with two powerful marine ‘pelistic’ engines, the ship is commanded by a Commandant having vast sea and air experience. It has a team of nine officers and 85 sailors. It also carries additional specialist officers and sailors, when need arises. 'Vijaya' has long endurance and can stay in the sea for a 22-days-long period.
"The vessel will not only provide better equipment for security and patrolling at Porbandarbut will also strengthen the air wing.