Coast Guard Hawk Eye On Gangasagar
Kolkata (The Hawk): The annual religious event Gangasagar Mela is witness to the largest congregation of Hindu devotees after Kumbh Mela. This year too, after Calcutta High court approval, the Gangasagar fair was inaugurated on January 10 by Sunderbans affairs minister Bankim Chandra Hazra in presence of Coast Guards and other state government officials.
The fair will continue till January 16 and a large number of devotees from across the country are arriving daily to take a holy dip at Sagar Island, situated at the confluence of Hoogly river and the Bay of Bengal on Makar Sankranti.
The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) is the national maritime search and rescue coordinator and accordingly the force has placed hovercrafts and ICG ships for Search and Rescue (SAR) coverage and to provide seaward security during the event. In addition, CG Helo/ aircraft are being tasked from coast guard Kolkata on a daily basis to provide aerial surveillance and SAR coverage.
The ICG has enhanced surveillance along the coastline of West Bengal to ensure seaward security during the event. Additionally, a lifesaving rapid action team comprising divers with rubber Gemini boats has also been deployed at the fair to assist the local administration. The Coast Guard District Headquarters 8 (West Bengal) has been working in close coordination with civil administration and other security agencies for smooth conduct of Gangasagar Mela.