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Home Ministry reviews coastal security

December 29, 2008 15:05 IST

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Coverage : Mumbai terror attacks
In an effort to tighten security at the sea-front, the government today held a high-level meeting on coastal security and took stock of the measures to plug loopholes in this route.

The meeting attended by National Security Adviser M K Narayanan, Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta, Border Security Force Director-General M L Kumawat and representatives of Navy and Coast Guards had a detailed discussion on the situation along the coastline and the steps being taken to beef up security in the wake of the Mumbai [Images] terror strikes. The 10 terrorists who stormed Mumbai on November 26 had come from Karachi via the sea route.

"The Home Ministry reviewed the coordination among central security agencies, state police, the navy and the coast guard. The meeting had a threadbare discussion about the security requirements, including fast-moving vessels and sophisticated naval equipment to protect Indian waters," a Home Ministry official said.

The government has been giving top priority for coastal security considering the vulnerability of the 7,516 km-long Idian coastline and is trying to plug all loopholes in this front following repeated intelligence inputs of security threats. The Centre is also giving emphasis for speedy implementation of the coastal security scheme being implemented since 2005-06.

The Union Home Ministry had launched a coastal security scheme over two years ago and sanctioned 73 police stations in nine coastal states and four Union Territories. In order to strengthen coastal security in Kerala [Images], the Centre has approved over Rs 40 crore to set up coastal police stations and for purchase of modern vessels and vehicles.

According to a Home Ministry data, an amount of Rs 1.97 crore has been approved for establishing eight coastal police stations in the southern state. The state will be getting 24 vessels--Sixteen 12-ton and eight 5-ton--at a total cost of Rs 40 crore, it said.

The state will also be purchasing 16 jeeps and 24 motor cycles for closer surveillance at a total outlay of Rs 0.78 crore, it added. "We have already approved a lump-sum amount of Rs 80 lakh for eight police stations at ten lakh per station," a senior Ministry official said.

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