Defence News India: India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval Friday asked the country’s strategic thinkers and military experts to focus on emerging threats in Indian Ocean region. Addressing a gathering of Indian military leaders and the naval chiefs and senior officials from 10 littoral countries in Indian Ocean region, Ajit Doval hoped that the brainstorming session would help in discussing and finding solutions for the challenges emerging in the region. In his address, the top security advisor to the Government of India also discussed the challenges and opportunities presented in the fields of sea, cyber and space warfare. He also released the 31st edition of Naval War College Journal on this occasion.
The theme for the conclave is ‘Common Maritime Priorities in IOR and need for Regional Maritime Strategy’.
The deliberations were focused on capacity building among the navies of Indian Ocean Rim countries to tackle the emerging maritime threats. The high level meeting also iscussed cooperative strategies for enhancing interoperability among partner maritime agencies.
Renowned national and international speakers articulated their views on these important issues, which were followed by theme based discussions.
The meeting which was divided in three sub-session, discussed the issue of Opportunities and Challenges in IOR, in which Admiral Sir George Zambellas (retd), former First Sea Lord of the Royal (UK) Navy, and Prof. Varun Sahni, Vice Chancellor of Goa University, were the speakers and the discussion was moderated by former chief of Indian Navy Admiral (retd) Arun Prakash.
In the second session, Admiral (retd) Jayanth Colombage (retd), former Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy and Arun Singh, former Indian Ambassador to the US, spoke on the sub theme ‘Imperatives and Priorities for Forging a Common Agenda in the IOR’. The second session was moderated by former navy chief Admiral (retd) Sunil Lanba.
Sidharto R Suryodipuro, Ambassador of Indonesia to India and Prabhat Shukla, former Indian Ambassador to Russia, spoke on the issue of ‘Regional Constructs and Strategies in the IOR’, which was moderated by Rear Admiral (retd) Sudarshan Shrikhande.
On the side-lines of this brainstorming conclave of regional navies, various bilateral meetings were also held, between the Chiefs of Navies, to further build on the existing bonds of friendship and also discuss issues specific to both countries.
The event which was held at Hotel Taj Fort Aguada was hosted by Navy Chief Admiral Karambir Singh. The gathering was attended by the navy chiefs and senior representatives of 10 Indian Ocean littoral countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand from South East Asia.
Navy chiefs or senior representatives from the neighbouring countries such as Bangladesh, Myanamar and Sri-Lanka and the islands of Seychelles, Maldives and Mauritius were also present in the brainstorming session.