Indian Coast Guard upgrades infra in crude oil hub in Gulf of Kutch near Jamnagar

World Friday 01/March/2024 18:45 PM
Indian Coast Guard upgrades infra in crude oil hub in Gulf of Kutch near Jamnagar

Jamnagar: Amid growing security concerns in the maritime zones, the Indian Coast Guard has upgraded its security infrastructure in India's crude oil hub in the Gulf of Kutch near Jamnagar where 70 per cent of Indian crude oil imports are received and major refineries, including that of Reliance are present.

A new jetty was inaugurated by Union Minister of State (MoS) for Defence Ajay Bhatt in the Vadinar area of Jamnagar, Gujarat, in the presence of Indian Coast Guard Chief Director General Rakesh Pal, which would allow the maritime force to deploy bigger vessels in the region along with quick response capability to counter any security issue there.

"This jetty is a major technological infrastructure. Since more than 70 per cent of the crude oil of the country enters this area, and if there is a big one of ours here, we would be ready to act. Today, the requirement of a jetty is fulfilled here. Our big ships will be deployed here by April 1," Indian Coast Guard Director General Rakesh Pal told ANI.

He said that the new facility, in the form of the jetty, would also allow the Indian Navy to deploy its ships here if they wanted to do so as per operational requirements.

The Indian Coast Guard is going to deploy its pollution control vessel, ICGS Samudra Pavak, in the area where there are huge oil tankers present 24x7 around the year to fight oil pollution disasters or incidents.

The marine zone is also very sensitive in the area and the Indian Coast Guard also has its pollution control teams deployed here in significant numbers.

The Gulf of Kutch area is the biggest crude oil hub in the country on the western coast in Gujarat, with major refineries of Reliance Industries and Nayara Petroleum present here.

Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister of State (MoS) for Defence Ajay Bhatt said that the possibility of infiltration of anti-national elements into Indian territory poses a threat to national security and the economy, with potential implications for energy security in the Gulf of Kutch region, a major hub for crude oil coming through which 74 per cent of India's crude oil passes via Vadinar and Kandla.

"This makes the area strategically important and requires 24x7 surveillance. The Vadinar Jetty has enhanced the operational capability of the Indian Coast Guard," he said.

He further said that the Vadinar jetty built by ICJ will further add to the geo-strategic significance of the region.

He also mentioned that the jetty would provide berthing facilities to Indian Coast Guard ships during operational visits to other Coast Guard stations deployed in the Exclusive Economic Zone and International Maritime Boundary Line.

"It would enable ICG to operate in all weather conditions and deploy ships during emergencies to enhance coastal security operations and deployment along the International Maritime Boundary Line. In addition, this jetty can provide decking and berthing facilities to Indian Navy ships," he said.