Chennai: The Coast Guards of India and Korea held a joint exercise on Friday, carrying out activities like scenarios of handling of hijacking, interdiction of pirate vessel and joint boarding operations.
General Rajendra Singh, Director, Indian Coast Guard, and Hong Ik Tae, Commissioner General of Korea Coast Guard and many other senior officials from both sides witnessed the exercise, titled 'Sahyog-Hyeoblyeog-2016,' held off Chennai in the south Indian Tamil Nadu state.
"During this year's exercise, we agreed to have point of contacts in India and Korea to share real-time information and anything related to pollution, search and control, piracy and day-to-day information," Singh told reporters. So far, five such editions of the exercise have been held and the aim was to "enhance the operational capability between the two sides," Singh said.
Further, the Indian Coast Guard would sign Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with Sri Lanka and Myanmar to conduct similar joint exercises, he said.
Friday's exercise saw various scenarios such as hijacking of a merchant vessel and its rescue in a joint operation by the two Coast Guards, interdiction of pirate vessel, Joint Boarding Operations, Cross Boarding, search and rescue demonstration and external fire fighting. A fly past was also held on the occasion.
The aim of the exercise was to strengthen the working level relationship between the two coast guards and further refine the joint operating procedures, a press release from the Coast Guard said.
Indian Coast Guard ships Samudra Paheredar, Rajtarang, Sagar and Anagh besides a Dornier aircraft and Chetak helicopter participated in the exercise while the Korean side was represented by its ship 3009.
To a question, Singh said the coast guard was interacting with fishermen to educate them to not to cross International Maritime Boundary, either with Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh or Myanmar, and had conducted over 200 programmes in this regard.