Indian Navy anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden have resulted in Somalian pirates shifting operations closer to the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the countey’s west coast, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) director Ranjit Sinha said.
“With Indian naval presence in the Gulf of Aden, some pirates began to shift their operations eastwards and southwards from Somalia and the Horn of Africa,” said Sinha, while delivering his keynote address at a workshop on Maritime Piracy on Wednesday held by the agency.
Sinha further said, “This led to some of the pirates operating closer to the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the Western coast of India.”
“From December 2010, the Indian Navy and the Coast Guard conducted several major anti- piracy operations off India’s Western Coast and apprehended around 120 suspected pirates,” Sinha said.
He said that the Gulf of Aden, which separates Somalia and Yemen and connects Arabian Sea to the Red Sea, has seen a spurt in attacks by pirates operating from Somalia since 2008.
A Navy source however told HT, “No piracy incident has occurred in Indian navy’s area of responsibility across the Indian EEZ. We are trying to further push the high-risk zone to 65 degree of longitude from 78 degree.”
During its deployments for anti-piracy operations, the Indian naval ships have prevented 40 piracy attempts on merchant vessels, according to the Indian Navy.
Pointing out the lack of lack of “a separate domestic legislation to deal with piracy-related offences” in India, Sinha also referred to the acquittal of the accused in its first piracy case — the Alondra Rainbow case of 1999 — in the high court.