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Security threat remains across Palk Strait: Rear Admiral Verma

P. V. Srividya
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Embarks on a tour of Eastern Naval units

touching base:Chief of Staff-designate, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral B.K. Verma, is received by Commander Umesh Kaisare, Area Commander, North, at Nagapattinam on Wednesday.Photo: B. Velankanni Raj
touching base:Chief of Staff-designate, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral B.K. Verma, is received by Commander Umesh Kaisare, Area Commander, North, at Nagapattinam on Wednesday.Photo: B. Velankanni Raj

Security concerns remain across the Palk Strait even after the defeat of the LTTE, though with an altered mandate, Chief of Staff-designate, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral B.K. Verma, said on Wednesday.

On a tour of the Eastern Naval units, the Rear Admiral, who visited the Naval detachment here, mapped the significance of the security apparatus to a query posed by The Hindu on the current relevance of naval detachments as security outposts in a changed security scenario.

“The entire coastal security is the Navy’s mandate, and there have been sustained investments in terms of manpower and infrastructure for the detachments. The security framework can eventually be reworked in line with the changing times in the long term.”

Naval detachments were set up along the Palk Bay at Nagapattinam, Thopputhurai, Kodiakkarai, Mallipattinam, Jagatapattinam, Thondi and Rameswaram in the early 1990s as bulwarks of coastal security to counter arms trafficking, illegal logistical support, and infiltration during the war in Sri Lanka.

The first one was set up at Kodiakkarai in Nagapattinam in view of its proximity to Sri Lanka. The detachments carry out radar surveillance and offshore boat patrolling, he said.

Alongside determining the operational preparedness of the detachment, the Chief of Staff-designate interacted with the sailors of the detachment to ascertain their strains and concerns while on duty.

Rear Admiral Verma, who is currently the Flag Officer, Advanced Operating Base, Projects, was earlier received by the Commander Umesh Kaisare, Area Commander North, and Commander V.C. Unnikrishnan, naval detachment, Kodiakkarai. He later left for Thondi and Rameswaram.


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