Coastal security, after 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks


On the anniversary of the Mumbai attacks, the Defence Minister spoke of a security cover now in place that tracks suspicious activities at sea. 

  • Today, the Indian Navy, Coast Guard and Marine Police have prepared such a three-tier security cover in the coastal areas of the country that no suspicious activity can be escaped from their lives. 
  • To ensure that these three tiers work in an integrated manner, an organisation named the Information Management and Analysis Centre (IMAC) was set up in 2014.
  • The Indian Navy is responsible for overall maritime security (coastal and offshore) and is supposed to be assisted in coastal security by the Coast Guard, State Marine Police and other agencies. 
  • Post 26/11 though, at the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security on February 16, 2009, the Coast Guard was additionally designated as the authority responsible for coastal security in territorial waters.


Information Management and Analysis Centre

  • IMAC is the nodal centre for maritime security information collation and dissemination. 
  • It is jointly operated by the Navy and Coast Guard and is the cornerstone of the National Command Control Communication and Intelligence Network for monitoring maritime traffic in India’s area of interest.
  • IMAC’s task is to facilitate exchange of maritime security information among various national stakeholders, and generate a common operational picture.
  • It is important to note that IMAC tracks only non-military or commercial ships, known as white shipping.
  • Military ships, or grey hull ships, are tracked by the Directorate of Naval Operations, as this is on a classified network.
  • IMAC focuses on ships passing through the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
  • At its headquarters, officers can look at all ships that transmit signals to an Automatic Identification System (AIS) when passing through IOR, and can look at information including route, destination, nationality and ownership for each vessel.
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