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13 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Strengthening Coast Guard

It is encouraging to note that the Bangladesh Coast Guard (BCG) has taken a move to make it a specialised force by recruiting permanent employees and purchasing high-powered equipment to ensure maritime security as well as protect blue economy. According to a report of this newspaper on Sunday, currently, the Coast Guard is running, hiring officers and sailors from the Bangladesh Navy on deputation for a period of three years. In this context, the paramilitary force, in cooperation with the home ministry, initiated the preparation of service rule to recruit sailors and officers permanently several times, but the initiatives failed due to bureaucratic tangles. The government has already purchased four offshore patrol vessels, seven inshore patrol vessels, two fast patrol boats, one floating crane and two tag boats for conducting operations along the coast and is going to install the crucial long-range identification tracking/ and vessel-trafficking monitoring and information system. But for modernising the force, these are not enough. After the settlement of maritime disputes with India and Myanmar, Bangladesh has now internationally accepted naval territory with its vast marine resources. Smuggling and trafficking of illegal arms also take place through the sea. For protecting the naval resources and stopping illegal activities, Bangladesh always needed a strong Coast Guard and that is why the present plan covering short-, mid- and long-term periods to be ended in 2013 ought to be pursued without fail. The high-range radar and required software would be installed at the tower in the coastal outposts of the paramilitary force to introduce the new system. For strengthening the activities of the Coast Guard, the paramilitary force is planning to purchase all-weather capable ship, hovercraft, drone, helicopter and maritime patrol aircraft soon. The need to have an aviation wing of the Coast Guard is vital and the government wants to do this through its short term plan (2015-2020) and purchase 10 modern helicopters. The vital thing of the mid-term plan (2020-2025) is to enhance the capacity of the Coast Guard to such a level when it can help the navy during war or whenever necessary. If the plan is implemented in its third phase, the Coast Guard would become a two-dimensional force by the year 2030. It is expected that the Coast Guard would be able to always perform its role of preserving Bangladesh’s interests at sea, protecting fisheries, preventing illegal immigration through the sea, controlling pollution and piracy, preventing smuggling and trafficking of illegal arms, drugs and narcotics by effectively conducting surveillance over the country’s maritime areas.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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