Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar (Retd) takes charge as India's first National Maritime Security Coordinator (Photo: IN Twitter)
Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar (Retd) takes charge as India's first National Maritime Security Coordinator (Photo: IN Twitter)

Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar (Retd) takes charge as India’s first National Maritime Security Coordinator

New Delhi: Former Vice Chief of the Naval Staff Vice Admiral G Ashok Kumar, who had superannuated last year, has been appointed as the first National Maritime Security Coordinator (NMSC) as part of the Union Government's consistent efforts to strengthen its maritime security. The NMSC will work within National Security Council Secretariat headed by NSA Ajit Doval.

The proposal for the creation of the post was approved by the Union Cabinet late last year to ensure cohesion among various key stakeholders with an overall objective to strengthen the country's maritime security. The need for an apex coordinating agency, for efficient management of maritime affairs by the institutionalised synergy between the Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard and the concerned Union Ministries and state governments, was first recommended by the Group of Ministers formed after the Kargil War.

The Ministry of Defence had also proposed the creation of a Maritime Security Advisory Board, and the post of Maritime Security Advisor after the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks in 2008; however, the proposal was kept pending. The NMSC will perform the task of coordinating between all the agencies involved in maritime security and maritime civil issues as well. He will also have the responsibility to improve the country's blue economy needs.

India's first National Maritime Security Coordinator alumnus of Sainik School, Amravathi Nagar and National Defence Academy, Khadakvasla, Pune, Vice Admiral Kumar held several challenging posts during his distinguished career of over three decades. He held the important assignments of Flag Officer Sea Training, Chief of Staff of Southern Naval Command and Flag Officer Maharashtra and Gujarat. He also served as the Commandant of the National Defence Academy and the Deputy Chief of Naval Staff.

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