In a significant collaboration under the framework of the Colombo Security Conclave (CSC), scientists from Bangladesh and Mauritius recently embarked on a joint ocean expedition on India’s research vessel, Sagar Nidhi. The expedition aims to undertake extensive research on ocean data, focusing on the prediction and management of changes in the marine environment and various ocean parameters.
Inception: CSCO Oceanographers and Hydrographers Conference
The foundation for this joint ocean expedition was laid during the inaugural CSCO Oceanographers and Hydrographers conference, held in Goa and Hyderabad in November 2022. Organized by the Indian National Centres for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) under the Ministry of Earth Sciences, this conference set the stage for the collaborative endeavor.
Introduction to Sagar Nidhi
Sagar Nidhi is a technologically advanced multidisciplinary research vessel operated by the National Institute of Ocean Technology in India. Built at Fincantieri in Italy, this impressive vessel spans a length of 104 meters and stands as India’s third research vessel, following Sagar Purvi and Sagar Paschimi.
Noteworthy Features of Sagar Nidhi
The remarkable features of Sagar Nidhi contribute to its effectiveness in conducting diverse oceanographic research. With a length of 104 meters and a width of 18 meters, this vessel is powered by fully automatic diesel-electric propulsion. It possesses blue water capabilities, enabling voyages of up to 10,000 nautical miles and expeditions lasting up to 45 days. Additionally, Sagar Nidhi is equipped with submersible capsules that can transport scientists to depths of six kilometers below sea level.
Applications of Sagar Nidhi
Sagar Nidhi serves multiple purposes in the field of marine research. It facilitates geoscientific, meteorological, and oceanographic studies, playing a crucial role in advancing these disciplines. The vessel also supports the government’s initiatives in establishing tsunami monitoring systems and studying marine threats in tropical and polar environments.
Colombo Security Conclave: Strengthening Regional Security
The Colombo Security Conclave (CSC), initially formed in 2011 as a trilateral maritime security grouping comprising India, Sri Lanka, and Maldives, has now expanded to include Mauritius as its fourth member. During the first meeting of national security advisors, Bangladesh and Seychelles were invited as observers and have been extended invitations to formally join the group.
Pillars of Cooperation within CSC
At the fifth meeting of national security advisors of CSC, key areas of cooperation were identified to enhance and strengthen regional security. These areas, referred to as the five pillars, include:
- Maritime Safety and Security.
- Countering Terrorism and Radicalization.
- Combating Trafficking and Transnational Organized Crime.
- Cyber Security, Protection of Critical Infrastructure, and Technology.
- Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief.
The joint ocean expedition on India’s research vessel, Sagar Nidhi, represents a significant milestone in the collaborative efforts between Bangladesh, Mauritius, and India within the framework of the Colombo Security Conclave. Leveraging the vessel’s advanced capabilities, the participating scientists aim to predict and manage changes in the marine environment effectively. This endeavor highlights the collective commitment of the involved nations to enhance regional security and promote scientific cooperation for a sustainable future in the Indian Ocean Region.
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