- Dec 3, 2017
As part of close maritime cooperation, India and Maldives jointly unveil navigation chartAs part of increased maritime cooperation, India and Maldives have jointly unveiled a navigation chart.
This is the first such navigation chart produced by both countries. It was unveiled during India's Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS) Admiral R Hari Kumar's visit to Maldives.
The chart is part of practical cooperation between the Naval forces of the two countries and helps ships to understand the maritime topography of Maldives Exclusive Economic zones, water depths, areas to avoid etc.
The fact that the Indian Navy chief choose Maldives as his first overseas visit after taking charge also shows Delhi’s increased engagement in the Indian Ocean and more focus on maritime.
Adm R Hari Kumar is on a three-day visit to Maldives from April 18 to April 20. During the visit, he called on President Ibrahim Mohamad Solih, Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid, Defence Minister Mariya Didi and Chief of Defence Staff Major General Abdulla Shamaal.
During a meeting with the Indian naval chief, Maldives Defence Minister Mariya noted the "promptness with which India submitted the Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the Coast Guard Harbour and Dockyard to Maldives, the review of which will be completed soon,” a Maldives defence ministry statement said.
Last year, India and Maldives signed a pact for the development of a coast guard harbour for maritime security.
The harbour will be developed at Uthuru Thila Falhu naval base. The pact was signed last year during Indian External Affairs Minister Jaishankar's visit to the country.
She also appreciated the Indian Navy's support in the maintenance and repair of the MNDF Coast Guard Fleet and transport of medicines and hospital consumables to Maldives during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under mission ‘Sagar One’ of the Indian Navy, India reached out to five Indian Ocean countries, including the Maldives.
Indian Navy Ship Kesari delivered 600 tons of food items to the island country.
During the visit, CNS handed over hydrography equipment to consolidate the organic capabilities of the Maldives National Defence Forces (MNDF). Additionally, he presented a consignment of engineering equipment for further sustenance of MNDF ships, something that will enhance the capacity building efforts.
Maldives defence minister expressed "appreciation for the continuous assistance and support rendered by the Indian Navy in maintenance and repair of MNDF Coast Guard Fleet", Maldives statement pointed out.
An Indian Navy statement said, "This visit further consolidates the strong and long standing bilateral relations between two close maritime neighbours and also identified new avenues of expanding the scope of bilateral cooperation in defence and maritime domain."
The Navy chief's visit comes in the backdrop of two high profile visits from Delhi to the Maldives—India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval for the Colombo Security Dialogue and Jaishankar's bilateral visit.
The chart is part of practical cooperation between the Naval forces of the two countries and helps ships to understand the maritime topography of Maldives Exclusive Economic zones, water depths, areas to avoid etc