State ports seek oil spill centers and immigration facility

Quick Summary

State maritime boards request vital infrastructure upgrades for better port management and safety.

The central government has issued a directive highlighting the lack of compliance certificates for navigational safety and clearance from the Petroleum and Explosives Safety Organisation at some state and union territory-run ports. In response, maritime states have been urged to expedite the necessary compliance measures.

Additionally, state maritime boards have made several requests, including the establishment of an immigration facility at the Puducherry port, the creation of response centers to manage oil spills in five states, and the removal of submarine oil and gas pipelines in Mumbai. These requests are aimed at enhancing facilities at respective ports to increase cargo and passenger volumes.

Among the demands, there is also a call for financial incentives to encourage the shift of cargo from road and rail to coastal shipping. To improve accountability and oil spill management, the proposal for Regional Oil Spill Response Centers (ROSRCs) in Vadinar (Gujarat), Mumbai (Maharashtra), Kochi (Kerala), Chennai (Tamil Nadu), and Paradip (Odisha) has been recommended by a committee under the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways.

To streamline security audits and inspections in non-major ports, the Tamil Nadu Maritime Board has suggested addressing issues related to multiple government arms conducting audits. A solution is in the works with the Ministry planning to establish a Bureau of Port Security (BPS), which would have exclusive authority for port audits.

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