India is offering their expertise to build Sri Lanka’s newly established Coast Guard force. India’s Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao has said that India is helping its island neighbor to build its coast guard, as the nation seeks help from India.
Ms. Rao was delivering National Maritime Foundation’s Eminent Person’s Lecture titled ‘India as a Consensual Stakeholder in the Indian Ocean: Policy Contours’ India Habitat Centre yesterday. The Foreign Secretary said India was looking how it can work to build Sri Lanka’s capacity for the maritime security. She noted that they were also working towards operationalizing a concept of mutual and shared security.
Mrs. Rao pointed out that India’s bilateral relations with Sri Lanka and other neighboring countries gave India access to a vast area of the Indian Ocean and maritime security. It is a new perspective to India’s bilateral relations as the broad spectrum of India’s ties with the neighbors has a strong economic and socio-cultural dimension. Sri Lanka’s Coast Guard was launched in March 2010 to effectively curb human smuggling and drug peddling activities across the country’s seas. It will also assist Sri Lanka fishermen in distress while fishing in the deep sea and provide security to the ships transporting goods and passengers.