Mar­itime Do­main Aware­ness and Se­cu­rity Im­per­a­tives

In 1982, the Common her­itage of Mankind con­cept was stated to re­late to Òthe seabed and ocean floor and sub­soil thereof, beyond the lim­its of na­tional ju­ris­dic­tionÓun­der Ar­ti­cle 136 of the United Na­tions Con­ven­tion on the Law of the Sea Treaty

SP's NavalForces - - FRONT PAGE - Rear Ad­mi­ral Sushil Ram­say (Retd)

In 1982, the Common Her­itage of Mankind con­cept was stated to re­late to “the seabed and ocean floor and sub­soil thereof, beyond the lim­its of na­tional ju­ris­dic­tion” un­der Ar­ti­cle 136 of the United Na­tions Con­ven­tion on the Law of the Sea Treaty

MAR­ITIME DO­MAIN AWARE­NESS ( MDA) is de­fined by the In­ter­na­tional Mar­itime Or­gan­i­sa­tion as the ef­fec­tive un­der­stand­ing of any­thing as­so­ci­ated with the mar­itime do­main that could im­pact the se­cu­rity, safety, econ­omy or en­vi­ron­ment. The mar­itime do­main is de­fined as all ar­eas and things of, on, un­der, re­lat­ing to, ad­ja­cent to, or bor­der­ing on a sea, ocean, or other nav­i­ga­ble water­way, in­clud­ing all mar­itime-re­lated ac­tiv­i­ties, in­fra­struc­ture, peo­ple, cargo, and ves­sels and other con­veyances. Thus de­mar­ca­tion of sea bor­der of a coun­try re­mains pretty much com­plex.

The In­dian Navy pub­li­ca­tion The In­ter­na­tional Law of the Sea and In­dian Mar­itime

Leg­is­la­tion stip­u­lates, ÒOver the cen­turies the in­ter­na­tional law of the sea had come to be based on the ba­sic prin­ci­ple of Òfree­dom of the seasÓ. Beyond the nar­row coastal strip of ter­ri­to­rial wa­ters, the seas could be freely used by all na­tions for fish­ing and for nav­i­ga­tion. Coastal states used to be con­tent with ex­clu­sive rights in their nar­row belt of ter­ri­to­rial wa­ters. The dis­cov­ery of pe­tro­leum and nat­u­ral gas in the shal­low wa­ters of the con­ti­nen­tal shelf led the US to is­sue the Tru­man procla­ma­tion in 1945, which claimed sov­er­eign rights over the re­sources of the con­ti­nen­tal shelf ad­ja­cent to its coast. Around the same time, coastal states found that the fish­ing ar­eas near their coasts were be­ing poached by larger and bet­ter equipped fish­ing ships of dis­tant for­eign states. Both th­ese de­vel­op­ments, com­bined with the emer­gence of newly in­de­pen­dent states after the de­coloni­sa­tion of Asia and Africa, led to a spate of uni­lat­eral claims by the coastal states to ex­tend na­tional ju­ris­dic­tion over large ad­ja­cent sea ar­eas to pro­tect their fish­ery re­sources.”

Un­der the United Na­tions Gen­eral Assem­bly Res­o­lu­tion 2749, the Dec­la­ra­tion of prin­ci­ples Gov­ern­ing the Seabed and Ocean Floor, was adopted by 108 na­tion states which pro­nounced that the deep seabed should be pre­served for peace­ful pur­poses and is the ÒCom­mon her­itage of Mankind.Ó In 1982, the Common her­itage of Mankind con­cept was stated to re­late to “the seabed and ocean floor and sub­soil thereof, beyond the lim­its of na­tional ju­ris­dic­tionÓ un­der Ar­ti­cle 136 of the United Na­tions Con­ven­tion on the Law of the Sea Treaty (UN­C­LOS). Con­se­quent to decades of de­lib­er­a­tions at the in­ter­na­tional fo­rums the ex­plo­ration rights of the na­tions were de­mar­cated and those recog­nised for In­dia are shown in the box.

Mar­itime Se­cu­rity Im­per­a­tives

Dr Theodore Karasik de­fines the geo-strate­gic and geo-eco­nomic im­por­tance of In­dian Ocean as, “de­spite its sig­nif­i­cant strate­gic po­si­tion as a ma­jor trade route and a home to a large part of world pop­u­la­tion, the In­dian Ocean was neglated for a long time. The sud­den rise of In­dia and China as global eco­nomic pow­ers has sig­nif­i­cantly in­creased their en­ergy needs and their de­pen­dence on the Gulf oil sup­plies. Con­se­quently, their en­ergy se­cu­rity in­ter­ests give th­ese two Asian play­ers di­rect stakes in the se­cu­rity and sta­bil­ity of In­dian Ocean, in par­tic­u­lar the safety of tran­sit lines from the Ara­bian Gulf to­wards the east coast of the Ara­bian Sea and the Bay of Ben­gal which sur­round In­di­aÕs long coastal area. This has po­si­tioned In­dia and China as ma­jor con­tenders for the share of the OceanÕs do­min­ion.ÓÒThe In­dian OceanÕs (SLOCs) are also key fac­tors in the global trade and eco­nomic sta­bil­ity since the oil and other trad­ing stuff pass through its wa­ter­ways on the way to Asia, Africa, Europe and other parts of the world. Any dis­rup­tion in the trade would cause sig­nif­i­cant stress and strain in many world economies....ÓThis ex­plains geostrate­gic and geo-eco­nomic im­por­tance of the re­gion for In­dia and con­se­quen­tially, huge re­spon­si­bil­ity to pro­tect and safe­guard the na­tionÕs mar­itime in­ter­ests be­hove on the IN.

Since Novem­ber 2008, sev­eral ini­tia­tives have been taken by the Gov­ern­ment of In­dia to strengthen over­all mar­itime se­cu­rity and the coastal se­cu­rity ap­pa­ra­tus against threat of non-state ac­tors from the sea. This en­tailed seam­less in­te­gra­tion of all mar­itime stake­hold­ers, in­clud­ing sev­eral State and Cen­tral agen­cies into the new coastal se­cu­rity mech­a­nism. The 15 or more agen­cies in­volved, rang­ing from In­dian Navy, In­dian Coast Guard, Cus­toms, In­tel­li­gence Agen­cies and port au­thor­i­ties to the home and Shipping min­istries, State gov­ern­ments and Fish­eries de­part­ments, etc. To syn­er­gise the mar­itime se­cu­rity ef­forts of all stake­hold­ers, the IN has es­tab­lished Joint Op­er­a­tions Cen­tres (JOC) lo­cated at Mumbai, Visakha­p­at­nam, Kochi and port Blair. The ul­ti­mate aim be­ing es­tab­lish­ment of na­tional mar­itime do­main aware­ness to cre­ate an in­te­grated in­tel­li­gence grid to de­tect and tackle threats em­a­nat­ing from the sea in real-time and to gen­er­ate a Òcom­mon op­er­a­tional pic­ture of ac­tiv­i­ties at sea through an in­sti­tu­tion­alised mech­a­nism for col­lect­ing, fus­ing and analysing in­for­ma­tion from tech­ni­cal and other sources like coastal surveil­lance net­work radars, space-based au­to­matic iden­ti­fi­ca­tion sys­tems, ves­sel traf­fic man­age­ment sys­tems, fish­ing ves­sel reg­is­tra­tion and fish­er­men bio­met­ric iden­tity data­bases.

Mar­itime Se­cu­rity Con­struct

While the In­dian Navy has the sin­gle-point over­all re­spon­si­bil­ity for the mar­itime se­cu­rity which also in­cludes the coastal se­cu­rity, there is a multi-tiered mar­itime se­cu­rity con­struct for­malised to cover the vast coast­lines and the wide ex­panse of Ex­clu­sive Eco­nomic Zone (EEZ). Re­spec­tive Naval Cs-in-C have been as­signed ad­di­tional re­spon­si­bil­ity as Cs-in-C, Coastal De­fence and head four JOCs. Un­der a well-de­fined se­cu­rity mech­a­nism pa­trolling of the in­land wa­ters and river­ine con­tigu­ous to the creeks and coast­lines has been as­signed to the State Marine po­lice of the coastal States and Union Ter­ri­to­ries, whose ju­ris­dic­tion ex­tends up to 12 nau­ti­cal miles (about 22 km). Coastal surveil­lance and se­cu­rity of ar­eas be­tween 12 and 200 nau­ti­cal miles (about 22 km to 370 km), which is the EEZ has been as­signed to the In­dian Coast Guard. INÕs ju­ris­dic­tion ex­tends beyond 200 nau­ti­cal miles (370 km). At times this di­vi­sion can get blurred de­pend­ing upon the op­er­a­tional re­quire­ment. The fol­low­ing ad­di­tional fea­tures of mar­itime and coastal se­cu­rity con­struct are in­cre­men­tally be­ing brought into force:

zzA Na­tional Com­mand, Con­trol, Com­mu­ni­ca­tion and In­tel­li­gence (NC3IN) net­work would be es­tab­lished for real-time Mar­itime Do­main Aware­ness link­ing the op­er­a­tions rooms of the IN and the ICG, both at the field and the apex lev­els. zz As­sets, such as ships, boats, he­li­copters, air­craft etc. as also the man­power

GRAPHIC: Pole Star

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