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Meera Ben enters Coast Guard service
Haresh Pandya in Rajkot | October 06, 2006 13:14 IST
The Coast Guard has inducted a state-of-the-art ship to add punch to the regular scouting and patrolling missions off the Gujarat coast and the International and Maritime Boundary Line.
The vessel, which is nearly 50 metres long and has a full displacement of 270 tons, is primarily designed for patrolling, anti-smuggling and anti-terrorist operations. It can also support the Navy during wartime as a coastal convoy escort and a communication link.
One of the most sophisticated vessels of its class, the ship is designed to project the Coast Guard as a leading maritime force in the subcontinent. The electronic chart display integrated systems has been inter-phased with various other equipment and permits navigation at the touch of a button.Keeping the tradition of naming all new Coast Guard ships after prominent female freedom fighters, or those who are a source of inspiration, the ultra-modern vessel has been named Meera Ben.
Meera Ben was the name Mahatma Gandhi gave to his English disciple Madeleine Slade for her devotion and dedication to India despite being a foreigner. The Indian government bestowed the Padma Bhushan on her in January 1982 in recognition of her invaluable contribution to the freedom struggle.