Coast Guard Current Affairs - 2020

ICGS Varad: First Major Defence ship to clear all acceptance Trials in a Single Sea Sortie

On February 28, 2020, the Indian Coast Guard’S ICGS Varad, an Offshore Patrol Vessel was commissioned at Chennai port. The vessel is to operate under North Eastern Coast Guard Region.

Highlights

The ICGS was built by L&T at Kattupalli near Chennai. It is 98 metres long and holds modern navigation and communication equipment. It is also equipped with 30 mm and 12.7 mm guns. The vessel also holds other onboard features such as platform management systems, integrated bridge system, high power external fire fighting system, etc.

Special Features of the vessel

The Patrol vessel is equipped with pollution responsible equipment for oil spill at sea and also swift boarding operations. It is also capable of carrying a twin-engine helicopter and also 4 high speed boats.

The vessel is the first defence ship to clear the acceptance trials in a single sea sortie. In simple words, the vessel cleared the trials of checking of its military operations in a single go.

What is Sortie?

Sortie is deployment of military unit in aircraft and shipping. It is a combat mission that an individual aircraft deploys as it takes off.

Sahyog-Kaijin-India-Japan joint exercise for Coast Guards

On January 16, 2020, India and Japan took part in a joint exercise called “Sahyog-Kaijin”. The exercise was held between the coastal guards of the countries at Chennai Port.

Highlights

The Japanese ship Ehigo and 4 ships of Indian Coast Guard participated in the exercise. The coast guards conducted the scenario of capture of a hijacked ship and rescue of crew in a joint operation. They also demonstrated search and rescue operations and displayed their fire-fighting skills.

The exercise was conducted based on the agreement signed by the Coast Guards of the countries in 2006.

Significance

The exercise is important for the countries to handle piracy in the Indian Ocean region. Also, both the countries being part of the Quad grouping, it is important for them to refresh their skills, learning from each other and stay connected to ease operations at sea.

Other exercises

Apart from Coastal Guard Exercises, Indian and Japan hold other military exercises as well. The “Shinyuu Maitri”is the joint Air Force Exercise that was held in October 2019 for the first time.

The India-Japan Maritime Exercise called JIMEX was conducted in 2013 for the first time. It focuses on maritime security cooperation.

Dharma Guardian is the military exercise that is conducted between the armies of the countries.