>In order to strengthen intelligence gathering system, Orissa will set up a new coast guard unit and marine police stations to insulate the state's 480-km coastline.
The decision was taken at a high level meeting attended by senior state government officials and personnel from coast guard.
"Apart from five marine police stations, another coast guard unit will come up at Gopalpur in Ganjam district of south Orissa," Home Secretary Asitya Padhi told reporters here yesterday after the meeting.
Currently, Paradip in north Orissa has a coast guard unit.
The government has identified 63 seaside villages where undercover agents would be positioned to pass information on infiltration and suspected activities.
In the meeting it was also decided that Global Positioning System would be installed in all trawlers operating in Orissa coast in order to keep a tab on their movements.
As the state police personnel had no basic knowledge of the marine patrolling, coast guard was urged to train them. Every marine police station would have 81 personnel each with boatmen, mechanized boats and other equipment required for
patrolling inside the sea, the minister said. As the state is close to Bangladesh and Myanmar, it fears infiltration of terror elements via the sea route. "The possibility of influx of terror elements into the state is apprehended particularly after Mumbai terrorist attacks," a senior official said, adding that both Orissa police and Coast Guard would jointly keep vigil on the movements in the Bay of Bengal.