Oceans can facilitate or disrupt, depending on how we treat them: Ambassador Mudgal

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Pune, April 16, 2024: Oceans are very crucial to the world and we need to protect them, feels former High Commissioner to Mauritius and member of FICCI’s Blue Economy Task Force, Amb Anup Mudgal.

Amb Mudgal was speaking at the five-day workshop on Underwater Domain Awareness (UDA) framework for Strategic Security Architecture and AtmaNirbharta, organised by the Maritime Research Centre in collaboration with Nirdhwani Technology Pvt. Ltd. (NDT) and the Indo-Swiss Centre of Excellence (ISCE) at Navalmal Firodia Seminar Hall, MCCIA, Pune.

Admiral DSP Varma – Former DG, Advanced Technical Vessels Programme (ATVP), Praful Talera – MRC Adviser on Blue Economy and Dr(Cdr) Arnab Das – Founder & Director MRC were also present on the occasion.

Speaking on Geopolitics and the SAGAR vision, Mudgal said SAGAR is an idea that has been close to the Indian mindsets. SAGAR is an abbreviation for Security and Growth for All in the Region.

“In my view, SAGAR is neither limited to a region, nor limited to a time. It is a perpetual thought, it has always lived in the Indian mindset and will live on further,” he said.

Talking about the importance of oceans, Mudgal said oceans are not only important to prevent threats, but also for facilitating the economy.

“Today over 50 percent of Indian GDP is driven by the external sector, and a huge part of the external sector is driven by the maritime spaces. Can you say the ocean doesn’t matter? The oceans are a huge resource in its own right. It is also a massive facilitator of other aspects of resources. You have food, energy, renewable energy, trade, transportation, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, minerals, seabed mining,” he said.

Mudgal also said that we can either prevent or fuel global warming by the way we treat our oceans. “Ocean is the single most important factor which either will contribute to global warming or will prevent it. It is up to us what we want it to do. If the oceans remain healthy, they will be prevented as they are the single largest carbon sink in the world. If we mess up with the ocean, it will put back the carbon in the atmosphere. We can’t live with the angry ocean.”

“We need to protect the ocean and make a statement as our lives depend on it. The world cannot disrupt the oceans and we have to ensure that. This is where SAGAR is born,” Mudgal said.

Earlier, the discussion was moderated by Dr. (Cdr) Arnab Das, Founder & Director MRC, Pune.