Chennai: The Coast Guard fleet’s strength will touch 200 ships and 100 aircraft by 2022, a senior official of the coastal security force said here on Friday.
Additional Director General V.S.R. Murthy also said Coast Guard is planning to set up an aviation unit in neighbouringPuducherry and also in Tuticorin.
In his address at the launch function of the first Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) built by L&T near here, he said its fleet will go up to 200 by 2022.
“Seventy ships are under construction in six shipyards. Coast Guard currently has 130 ships and 62 aircraft,” Murthy said, adding that the government has approved an around Rs 32,000 crore action plan for the force.
Named ICGS Vikram, the Rs 186 crore OPV was built by L&T Shipbuilding Ltd and is the first of the seven to be manufactured.
Murthy recalled that when he joined the service, his training was in a ship named Vikram, which was later decommissioned, but now the new vessel had the same name.
He also said that the Indian Coast Guard was the fourth largest and one of the fastest growing such organisations in the world.
Apart from the 70 ships under construction, he said bidding process for 30 more ships is the process.
Murthy said Coast Guard has recently acquired 34 interceptor boats out of 36 ordered with L&T Shipbuilding and the remaining two will also be supplied soon. Each costs around Rs 30 crore.