M A I N   N E W S

Coastal radar chain after mid-2013
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 26
On the anniversary of the 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai, the government today admitted that the promised chain of coastal radars to keep an eye on threats originating at the sea was still not fully installed. In fact, the chain of radars is not likely to be in place till mid-2013.

After 10 Lashkar-e-Toiba men sailed into Mumbai to expose India’s lack of preparedness, the country announced a project to install 46 coast-based high-frequency radars all along the 7,500 km Indian coastline under a Rs 602-crore project.

The second part of the coat security network involved installation an automated identification system (AIS) for all sea-going boats. This envisaged setting up of radio frequency-based AIS transponders on all boats weighing below 300 tonne. Shore-based sensors (around 85) would then automatically pick out a boat with complete identity of the owner flashing on screen.

The project is still being “studied” jointly by the Director General, Lighthouses, the Coast Guard and the Department of Fisheries, a senior functionary said. Almost all under-300 tonne boats are fishing vessels and one such vessel was used by the 10 attackers to reach Mumbai. Vessels over 300 tonnes have an AIS.

The island territories of Andaman Nicobar and Lakshadweep were to get 10 of the 46 radars as these lie very close to the international sea lanes of communication (SLOCS). Over 80 per cent of the Indian trade takes place through the sea route. Sources said work of planned radar stations at Chennai and Kolkata was running behind schedule, while not even one of the 10 radar stations on the islands had become functional so far. The radar station at Vishakapatnam was opened last week.

Defence Minister AK Antony today told the Lok Sabha that “in the first phase, 46 radars (36 on mainland and 10 in island territories) have been planned which are envisaged to be fully functional by middle of next year”.

The first two radars were installed on the west coast in July. Antony, sources said, had set a target of November 26 for covering the entire mainland. These powerful long-range radars can spot even small boats and instantly beam information to the ground-based controllers in the form of live pictures.


  • 46 coast-based high-frequency radars are to be set up all along the 7,500-km Indian coastline
  • The island territories of Andaman Nicobar and Lakshadweep will get 10 of the 46 radars
  • The first two radars were installed on the west coast in July this year
  • The project is estimated to cost around Rs 602 crore





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