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An Indian Perspective for World Maritime Day: Connecting Ships, Ports, and People

One of the most important factors for smooth maritime trade and travel is adequate safety for ships, ports, and people. The theme for World maritime Day, 2017 connects these three key elements, celebrating the interrelation of the diverse aspects of the marine industry. In continuation to 2016’s line of thought, the theme continues to explore the different ways in which shipping is indispensable to the world.

Maritime safety and security is and has ever been an integral part of marine activities. However, for a long time, the shipping industry has been reactive about the safety of ships and people, learning from its failures.

In recent years, the IMO has identified all natural and manmade causes that can impede the travel of the ships, such as weather hazards, piracy, war, technological difficulties, cyber infringement, terrorism, stowaways, and smuggling as threats to smooth sea trade and is prompt in taking action against these to ensure that ship and port security is not compromised. The International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS) code is the IMO’s principal framework for mandatory and non-mandatory safety measures that need to be taken by all member nations for maritime security.

Several new measures have been put in place with the view of meeting IMO’s goals for sustainable development. Members of the UN associated with marine trade have developed stringent strategies to ensure that there is no loss of life and property on seas or on shores.

As India is one of the key players in maritime trade, the Indian government has taken considerable efforts to maintain safe seas and safe shores. Ship manufacturers in India are expected to maintain the IMO-specified standards while manufacturing safety equipment for ships and the crew, or carrying out ship repairs and inspection.

In addition, after the terrorist attacks of 26/11, India has taken port and coastal security to the next level, making comprehensive efforts to align its ship security goals with those of the IMO and ensure integrated safety of these fundamentals. The entire coast is governed through radar surveillance and stringent identification systems are in place for unique vessel registration.

Capt. L. K. Panda, former Nautical Advisor to the Government of India speaks here about the various measures India has implemented to ensure complete safety of ships, ports, and people.

Shipping is indispensable to global trade, and when it comes to shipping, ships, ports, and people are inextricably intertwined. India’s maritime safety strategy reflects this, including dedicated focus towards combating on and offshore threats emanating from the sea, developing strong coordination mechanisms for contingencies, and creating a seamless security network for freedom of trade.

About Captain L.K. Panda :

Capt. L.K.Panda is former Nautical Advisor to the Government of India at the Directorate General of Shipping. He has joined the organization in the year 1992. He started his seafaring carrier in 1975 from T.S. Rajendra and sailed in various capacities in Merchant Ships including service as Master on various types of ships. However, after completion of his Extra Master in 1988, he joined Government of Iran as Maritime Educational Advisor for a brief period.

During his service with the Indian Maritime Administration, he has represented India in various maritime forums National & International & been a part of many committees including the committee on Modal Shift of Cargo from Rail and Road toSea. He has also served in the capacity of a consultant on behalf of International Maritime Organization (IMO) for the Caspian States and continues to be associated with the IMO. In addition to the above, he was also nominated as an arbitrator for many marine cases.
His present assignment in the capacity of Nautical Advisor to the Govt. of India is to improve Maritime Safety Pollution Prevention, development of manpower for the Maritime Industry besides overall growth of the Industry on National and Regional basis.

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