Highlights:

  • Defence Minister Rajnath Singh awarded gallantry and meritorious service medals to Coast Guard personnel at the Investiture Ceremony
  • The defence minister recalled that the India Coast Guard was commenced with 4-6 boats
  • The defence minister explained that without maritime security, it is impossible to create a comprehensive internal and external security framework

On Saturday, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh awarded gallantry and meritorious service medals to Coast Guard personnel at the Investiture Ceremony being conducted at the National Stadium Complex in Delhi.

While addressing the occasion, the defence minister recalled that the India Coast Guard was commenced with 4-6 boats, now with over 150 ships and 66 aircraft, it holds an important place in the world’s best maritime forces. He added that Indian Coast Guard professionalism, and ever-growing nature, instils confidence among the countrymen that our national maritime interest is under the safe watchful eye of brave guards.

He stressed that the sea has enriched us with wealth, minerals and vegetation and connected us with the world. He continued that traditions, festivities, festivals, art, literature, culture, trade and economy are largely linked to the sea, but along with this prosperity, we have also confronted security challenges related to the sea.

The defence minister explained that without maritime security, it is impossible to create a comprehensive internal and external security framework. He noted that India’s maritime zones are safe, secure and pollution-free, ensuring our security needs and economic needs together.

Rajnath Singh voiced, “Today our country is moving ahead on the path of rapid development. Unhindered maritime activity is one of our major needs in this path. Due to rising maritime power, our prosperity is largely dependent on the sea.” He added that in line with the vision of the Government of India, the coast guard has always been at the forefront to upheld regional cooperation, maintain maritime peace in the Indian Ocean Region, and thereby work in close association with International Maritime Agencies.

The defence minister expressed, “I am happy to say that the gallant acts carried out by our coast guards to ensure maritime security have had an equal impact not only on our region but also in our neighbourhood.” He continued, “Be it the unfortunate accident of ‘New Diamond’ or container vessel ‘Express Pearl’, our Coast Guard has contributed significantly to the fire-fighting and pollution response by running ‘Sagar Raksha-I’ and ‘II’ operations.”

Rajnath Singh further hailed the campaign against Contraband, that is, illegal weapons and Narcotics trafficking. He continued, “Not long ago, you also did a commendable job of saving the lives of many sailors and others in the coastal areas by risking lives in the storms ‘Taukte’ and ‘Yash’. I appreciate you for this.” “There are not one but many such incidents where you have played an important role and upheld the prestige of ‘Sentinels of the Sea’ “, he appreciated.

The Minister concluded his address by saying that the credit for all these achievements goes to all the officers and jawans of our Coast Guard jointly. He expressed, “On this occasion, I also bow down on my behalf to the families of our Jawans, who are their backbone.”

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