New Delhi (NVI): Indian Navy is going to organize the second edition of the biennial pan-India coastal defence exercise ‘Sea Vigil-21’ on January 12-13, 2020, in order to validate and further strengthen the coastal defence mechanism by synergizing efforts of various central and state agencies.
The exercise, inaugural edition of which was conducted in January 2019; will be undertaken along the entire 7,516 km coastline and Exclusive Economic Zone of India and will involve all the 13 coastal States and Union Territories, according to a statement issued by Ministry of Defence.
It will also involve other maritime stakeholders, including the fishing and coastal communities, it added.
Assets of the Indian Navy, Coast Guard, Customs and other maritime agencies will participate in Sea Vigil, the conduct of which is also being facilitated by the Ministries of Defence and Home Affairs.
The exercise will be conducted in two phases. In 1st phase, deployment of assets and internal/ external audit/ assessment would be undertaken. Whereas, in 2nd phase, teams role playing as anti national elements would try to make incursions on the coast from sea, PRO Defence stated.
The entire coastal security set up was reorganised after the 26/11 Terror attack at Mumbai which was launched via the sea route.
Notably, the scale and conceptual expanse of the exercise is unprecedented in terms of the geographical extent, the number of stakeholders involved, the number of units participating and in terms of the objectives to be met.
The exercise is a build up towards the major Theatre level exercise TROPEX [Theatre-level Readiness Operational Exercise] which Indian Navy conducts every two years, according to the statement.
The conduct of a security exercise at national-level is aimed to serve a larger purpose as it provides opportunity, at the apex level, to assess preparedness in the domain of maritime security and coastal defence.
Extensive utilisation of technological infrastructure and assets of all stakeholders will be undertaken to conduct the exercise.
Effectiveness of fishing community in serving as ‘Eyes and Ears’ for early warning of threats will also be assessed.
In addition to this, the exercise ‘Sea Vigil 21’ will provide a realistic assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the Navy and will help in further strengthening maritime and national security.