Mission Sagar - II
- 03 Nov 2020
- 6 min read
Why in news
As part of ‘Mission Sagar-II’, the Government of India is providing assistance to Friendly Foreign Countries to overcome natural calamities and Covid-19 pandemic.
- Towards the same INS Airavat is delivering food aid for the people of Sudan.
- Mission Sagar-II, follows the first ‘Mission Sagar’ undertaken in 2020.
- As part of Mission Sagar-II, Indian Naval Ship Airavat will deliver food aid to Sudan, South Sudan, Djibouti and Eritrea.
- Mauritius, Madagascar, Comoros and Seychelles along with La Réunion are part of Indian Ocean Commission. India has recently become an observer to the Commission.
- The assistance is in line with India’s role as the first responder in the Indian Ocean region.
- The deployment is also in consonance with the Prime Minister's vision of Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)
- Earlier, India had sent Indian Naval Ship (INS) Kesari, carrying food items and medical assistance teams, to countries in the southern Indian Ocean to deal with Covid-19 pandemic as part of a "Mission Sagar" initiative.
- Strategic Significance of the Island Countries:
- The strategic importance of these island nations is highlighted by their location along key Sea Lines of Communication (SLOCs).
- These islands are vital and can facilitate a navy’s continuous presence along key international shipping routes, allowing a navy to patrol and secure SLOCs during peace times and an option to interdict and cut off an adversary’s communications during times of conflict.
- Other Related Initiatives:
- India on the 65th anniversary of the landmark Bandung Conference emphasized that members of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) must work to reduce the socio-economic impact of the pandemic on the most vulnerable sections of society and promote South-South cooperation.
- In the wake of the global pandemic, the International Solar Alliance (ISA) responded by setting up ISA CARES (like PM-CARES in India), an initiative dedicated to the deployment of solar energy in the healthcare sector.
- With Covid-19 and trade tensions between China and the United States are threatening supply chains, Japan has mooted the Supply Chain Resilience Initiative (SCRI) as a trilateral approach to trade, with India and Australia as the key-partners.
- The Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness for Innovation (CEPI), a global initiative, has named Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI), Faridabad as one of the six laboratories for assessing Covid-19 vaccine candidates that are under development
- India has contributed 10 million USD to SAARC Covid-19 Emergency Fund and manufactured essential drugs, Covid protection and testing kits, for countries in the SAARC region (Eg. Operation Sanjeevani for Maldives).
- Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR) was launched in 2015. It is India’s strategic vision for the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
- Through SAGAR, India seeks to deepen economic and security cooperation with its maritime neighbours and assist in building their maritime security capabilities.
- Further, India seeks to safeguard its national interests and ensure Indian Ocean region to become inclusive, collaborative and respect international law.
- The key relevance of SAGAR emerges when seen in conjunction with India’s other policies impacting the maritime domain like Act East Policy, Project Sagarmala, Project Mausam, India as ‘net security provider’, focus on Blue Economy etc.
Other Important Groupings Associated with Indian Ocean Region
- Indian Ocean Rim Association: The Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) was established in 1997.
- It is aimed at strengthening regional cooperation and sustainable development within the Indian Ocean region.
- Indian Ocean Naval Symposium: The ‘Indian Ocean Naval Symposium’ (IONS) is a voluntary initiative that seeks to increase maritime cooperation among navies of the littoral states of the Indian Ocean Region by providing an open and inclusive forum for discussion of regionally relevant maritime issues.
- Indian Ocean Commission: Recently, India has been approved as an observer of the Indian Ocean Commission, the inter-governmental organization that coordinates maritime governance in the south-western Indian Ocean.
- Asia Africa Growth Corridor: The idea of Asia Africa Growth Corridor (AAGC) emerged in the joint declaration issued by India and Japan in 2016.
- The AAGC is raised on four pillars of Development and Cooperation Projects, Quality Infrastructure and Institutional Connectivity, Enhancing Capacities and Skills and People-to-People partnership.