The Coastal Security Group (CSG) of Tamil Nadu government has taken up the issue of maintenance and repair of patrolling craft with the Garden Reach Shipyard Ltd (GRS), Kolkata, said C. Sylendra Babu, Additional Director-General of Police, CSG.
On a bicycle expedition along with members of CSG and Indian Coast Guard from Chennai to Kanyakumari, Mr. Babu said the ‘Thane’ cycle had damaged four boats. Out of the 24 patrolling vessels, 16 were in working condition. It was not possible to keep all crafts in working condition always owing to various reasons.
However, the CSG was in constant touch with the GRS, which supplied the vessels, because of which service and maintenance of patrolling vessels had improved. In fact, company has posted a General Manager in Chennai. Still, the problems persisted and efforts were being taken to operationalise all craft.
On shortage of experienced pilots to operate boats, he said recruitment of ex-Navy men has started.
A number of experienced pilots had applied for the job on a contract basis. They would be posted within a few weeks.
On the bicycle expedition, Mr. Babu, who completed the first leg of the expedition from Chennai to Puducherry along with a team from Coast Guard led by Commandant S. Prem Kumar, said it was aimed at creating awareness about the functioning of Coastal police and the Coast Guard among coastal residents. It would cover 890 km from Chennai to Kanyakumari within 10 days. Participants would meet Village Vigilance Committee members enroute.