New Delhi: Three years after the infamous 26/11 terror strikes in Mumbai, the government has finally decided to take concrete steps to activate a coastal radar chain linked to a national automatic identification system (AIS) network which is equipped to detect and track suspicious vessels entering Indian waters.
Since 26/11 a number of beachings have taken place in Mumbai where merchant vessels, either derelict or in trouble, have crashed onto the city coastline undetected.
The coastal radars will be manufactured by defence PSU, Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL), in collaboration with a foreign firm. The contract was signed last week.
"The contract is worth Rs601.77 crore. Under it, 36 coastal radars will be installed in the mainland, six in Lakshadweep and Minicoy Islands and four in Andaman and Nicobar Islands," said an official.
Sources said the plan entails setting up the radar chain within a year on the mainland and after a period of six months on the islands.
The radars, equipped with electro-optic sensors, will be installed on existing lighthouses on the mainland as well as on 13 towers which will be additionally constructed. Phase-II of the project, involving the installation of 37 additional radars, will follow thereafter, sources said.