Indian Navy fully seized of its role in maritime cooperation: Navy Chief

Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh on Friday said the Navy is committed to “enhancing cooperation and engagement” with like-minded navies in the Indian Ocean region and is fully seized of its role in maritime cooperation.

“Indian Navy is fully seized of its role in maritime cooperation,” Admiral Singh said while addressing a seminar here.

“When we follow (the) maritime cooperation roadmap, we are following what the Government of India’s policy is. And I think there is no better way to enunciate the Government of India’s policy for maritime cooperation then the acronym which our Prime Minister has given, which is ‘Sagar’. It means the seas and the oceans, but it is an acronym for security and growth for all in the region,” he added.

Further explaining how Indian Navy executes maritime cooperation, he said, “There are four methods through which we do that – constructive engagements, collaborative efforts, capacity building and capability enhancement.”

“Indian Navy is committed to enhancing cooperation and engagement with like-minded navies in the Indian Ocean region and our engagement is again guided by five ‘S’, articulated by the Prime Minister – Samman (respect), Samvad (dialogue), Sahyog (cooperation), Shanti (peace) and Samriddhi (prosperity),” he said.

Admiral Singh stated that Indian Navy believes in “collective military competency.”

“Not necessary that one nation has all the capacity. We have to learn from each other. Seychelles and Mauritius are making efforts towards marine ecology, Myanmar is good example of indigenous shipbuilding,” he said.

For the Indian Navy, cooperation is a very vital word, Admiral Singh said.

“For us at sea, there are certain elements that make cooperation very important. First is the nature of the seas. The seas are open by nature… Seas do not divide, they connect. They are known therefore as the highways of prosperity. We are all reaping the benefits of this rule-based order and open seas, and the very interconnection that the seas offer us,” he said.

“The second reason why cooperation is important is the very expanse of the seas. Two-third of the Earth surface is the seas. The third issue that I want to stress about the oceans is the nature of the threats and challenges that we are facing on the ocean. We have piracy, which is a common threat. But the threat has transnational interregional connections… You see drug trafficking, which is related to narco-terrorism, human trafficking, illegal unreported and unregulated fishing. All these have transnational interregional character,” he added.

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