New Delhi: A Parliamentary Standing Committee Thursday rapped the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) for its poor rate of force accretion, pointing out that it had added only two ships and six boats in the four years since 2007-08.
In its report tabled in parliament, the committee on defense noted that though it was given the impression on “a lot of efforts” by the ICG to upgrade its capacity post-26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, the force accretion rate indicated that the progress in this regard is “slow.”
It noted that the ICG at present has 44 ships, six hovercraft, 28 Dornier surveillance aircraft, 24 boats, 20 Chetak helicopters and four Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopters.
It expressed “serious concern” over almost one-fourth of the total Dorniers and Chetaks undergoing major services and repairs at any given time.
On the equipment side, the report noted that the Super Rapid Gun Mounting (SRGM) installed on board ICG Ships Samar and Sangram are not working since 2006 and on ICGS Sagar since June 2009. The SRGM on ICGS Sarang is partially operational.
It also emphasized that with increasing perceived threat levels from various quarters, the country “cannot afford delay and shifting of deadlines” in respect of acquisition of various types of force levels.
The panel noted that over 50 percent of the 72 commissioned surveillance platforms have exceeded their designated life span.
The ICG has about 131 surveillance platforms already under construction in Indian shipyards and another 200 platforms are in the process of being contracted.