Okha: The government is committed to increasing the Coast Guard’s strengths and capabilities so that it can protect the Indian coastline without any trouble, Defence Secretary Giridhar Aramane said on Friday.

The maritime force is also acquiring new capabilities to keep watch on faraway areas in the sea, including the Pakistan coast, he said.

The Centre is trying its best to provide all the required equipment to the Indian Coast Guard, he said, adding the ICG now has several patrol vessels, fast boats and aircraft.

Aramane was speaking after inaugurating a hovercraft maintenance unit of ICG at Okha in Gujarat’s Devbhumi Dwarka district.

Director General Rakesh Pal and senior officials were present at the inaugural ceremony, ICG said in a release.

The hovercraft maintenance infrastructure shall provide a fillip to the operational readiness in forward areas, the release said.

Hovercrafts are used in amphibious operations. With the help of hovercraft, one can reach difficult terrains easily, such as small marshy islands near the coast, Aramane said.

ICG along with the Indian Navy, Border Security Force and Narcotics Control Bureau are working together to stop drug trafficking through the sea route, Aramane said.

Gujarat police are also contributing in the effort, he said, adding all these security agencies are keeping a close watch on the traffickers and points of origin.

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