Kochi: ‘The Info Fusion Centre (IFC-IOR) necessary for action against piracy and terrorism in the Indian Ocean Region would soon be activated. It would strengthen the security in the region,’ the Indian Naval Chief Sunil Lanba expressed with confidence.
The IFC which would be operational with India’s lead would see participation from 18 countries. Keeping in view the increasing strategic importance of the Indian Ocean region, the IFC-IOR is claimed would be beneficial for India as also its allies. This would deepen the natural Indian influence in the concerned marine region. The move would also jolt the Chinese aspirations of dominating the region. Therefore, the Indian Naval Chief’s announcement has assumed great strategic importance.
A special meeting of the naval chiefs of the members of the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) recently concluded in Kochi. The IONS is an association of the navies of the countries in the Indian Ocean region, which was established in 2008. The association formed for the countries in the area only demonstrates the Indian foresight. Since the last 15 years, China used its financial and military might to increase its influence in the region. It created a looming threat of imbalance in the area.
Keeping the circumstances in view, India decided upon forming the IONS. Navy Chief Lanba‘s announcement about the activation of the IFC-IOR for the benefit of the member countries, demonstrates to the world the new heights the Indian cooperation had scaled to with the nations. While speaking on the occasion, Naval Chief Lanba announced that the central government had issued clearance to the Navy for activation of the IFC-IOR.
The central government has allowed the exchange of information regarding White Shipping, meaning the freight ships. Moreover, the information centre would be under Indian control. It would not only consolidate India’s hold over the Indian Ocean region but also ensure the safety of the countries in the region. Furthermore, India would be in a better position to track the movements of the Chinese navy in the Indian Ocean region. For this reason, the military analysts deem the activity to be of great importance.