Millennium Post

India to keep tab on China movement with ‘eyes on, hands off’

The ministry of defence along with the union home ministry has launched ‘Eyes on, Hands off’ drive through satellite imagery at Andaman & Nicobar Islands following China’s muscle flexing exercise at Coco Island in Myanmar, which is separated from the North Andaman only by 20 km wide Coco chanel.

The initiative has been taken after Myanmar’s response over China’s air strip at Coco Island was unsatisfactory to the Indian government. Sources said, union home and defence ministry repeatedly sought

explanation from Myanmar about the air strip, but they failed to give a ‘pleasing’ response. Concern over nation’s security following reports of Chinese vessels in the Indian territory, the Indian government has decided for the ‘Eyes on, Hands off’ drive to keep an eye on ‘Defence activities of neighbouring countries’ close to the archipelago.

Coco Islands are a pair of strategically important islands located in the eastern Indian Ocean, politically administered by Myanmar under Yangon Division. The drive which was launched recently was done secretly and constant monitoring of imagery pictures through satellite has already started.

What came as a major concern before the Indian agencies when they learnt that the security arrangement to guard Indian marine border at Land Fall Island (which is close to the Coco Island) is poorly guarded. There was a check post at the Land fall Island but that is not at par with the China’s Defence establishment at the Coco Island.

There were also instances of poachers from neighbouring countries attacking the Sentinels (aboriginal tribes). ‘Now with constant vigil and satellite vigilance we will be able to guard the Sentinelese as well as we will able to keep an eye on our neighbours,’ a senior Defence official in Port Blair told Millennium Post over telephone.

He said, ‘The driver was important because last year a pigeon was caught with a tag on her legs scribbled with Chinese code and also instances of poachers from Myanmar and Burma has increased. It is yet to be known that these people are entering Indian Territory only for poaching or for spying,’ a senior Defence official in Port Blair told Millennium Post over telephone.

The officers of the coast guard and the Navy were asked to intensify their vigil and a circular has been issued to the concern departments at Port Blair.
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