With the Indian Navy taking on the task of maintaining stability in the Indian Ocean region, a decision to base a Dornier maritime patrol aircraft in the Maldives to carry out surveillance. The Indian Navy will monitor the island nation’s exclusive economic zone as well as ward off piracy threats in the waters. The Indian Navy’s Dornier aircraft will be stationed at Male for about a month.
India’s interaction with Maldives has diversified in the recent past. Indian Navy has been sending a warship or a naval plane to perform security roles for Maldives in the last two years. This was initiated due to the rising instance of piracy. India has also gifted a fast attack craft to the Maldivian maritime forces. Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has also set up a chain of coastal radars for Maldives apart from training its personnel in operating various equipment.
With the Indian Defence Minister A.K.Antony’s announcement recently regarding the Indian Navy’s role as a net security provider to island nations in the Indian Ocean region, the current move only reinforces India’s keenness to establish stability. The current move of the Indian naval aircraft for surveillance in Maldives by India is a goodwill gesture. India is assuring its maritime neighbors about its commitment towards their security by maintaining vigil in its waters.
Meanwhile, India and Maldives have been increasing their defence interactions rapidly. In a recent visit by Maldivian Defence Minister Thalhath Ibrahim Kaleyfaanu, extensive talks on bilateral cooperation and regional security issues were held. Maldivian Minister Kaleyfaanu said that India had always extended assistance to Maldives on both economic and security fronts and both nations will further develop the relations for a stable and secure future. He added that Maldives is highly dependent on India as far as security is concerned and Maldives will aid India in every way.
Besides Maldives, India is also extending its support to other island nations such as Maldives. India has gifted a speedboat to the Mauritian maritime force and coastal radars and automated identification system too have been set up by India in Mauritius for maritime surveillance of the island nation. Mauritius has also placed an order for an offshore patrol vessel with Kolkata-based defence shipyard Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers.