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Indian Coast Guard Ship Samudra Paheredar Embarks on ASEAN Deployment

New Delhi: Indian Coast Guard ship Samudra Paheredar, a specialized Pollution Control Vessel, made a significant stopover at Manila Bay, Philippines, on March 25, 2024, marking the beginning of a three-day visit. The arrival of this specialized vessel is part of a broader initiative aimed at demonstrating the Indian Coast Guard’s (ICG) Marine Pollution Response capabilities and shared concerns regarding marine pollution in the ASEAN region. This visit also seeks to bolster bilateral cooperation with the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG).

The deployment of Samudra Paheredar to ASEAN countries, namely the Philippines, Vietnam, and Brunei, from March 25 to April 12, 2024, marks the third consecutive overseas deployment by the Indian Coast Guard to ASEAN nations. In 2023, ICG Pollution Control Vessels visited Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia as part of this initiative.

During its deployment, Samudra Paheredar is scheduled to make port calls in Manila (Philippines), Ho Chi Minh (Vietnam), and Muara (Brunei). Equipped with specialized marine pollution control equipment and a Chetak Helicopter in Pollution Response configuration, the vessel is designed to contain and recover spilled oil, thereby augmenting pollution response operations. The demonstration at visiting ports will include Pollution Response training and practical displays of various equipment.

In addition to its primary mission, Samudra Paheredar has embarked 25 National Cadet Corps (NCC) cadets to participate in the Government’s initiative “Puneet Sagar Abhiyan” and provide it with international outreach in coordination with partner nations. As part of an overseas exchange program, the NCC cadets, along with ICG ship crew, partner agency personnel, Indian Embassy/Mission staff, and local youth organizations, will undertake beach cleanup and similar activities during the port call of the ship.

This visit holds significant importance in strengthening bilateral relationships with key maritime agencies, including the Philippine Coast Guard, Vietnam Coast Guard, and Brunei Maritime agencies. The ICG has a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) towards Enhanced Maritime Cooperation and Maritime Safety and Security with the Coast Guards of the Philippines and Vietnam. These relationships, evolving over the years, aim to address safety, security, and marine environment concerns in the region. The visit’s agenda includes professional exchanges, cross-deck visits, joint exercises, as well as official and social engagements, including visits to capacity-building facilities.

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