The emerging maritime security challenges have magnified the responsibilities of navies across the world, President Pranab Mukherjee has said.
"The emerging maritime security challenges, across the oceans of the world, have magnified the responsibilities of navies," he said at the banquet hosted in his honour by Navy Chief R. K. Dhowan at the Eastern Naval Command Officers mess here last night.
The President onboard 'INS Sumitra' had yesterday sailed through a display of 70 ships off Visakhapatnam at International Fleet Review (IFR).
"The seemingly vast stretches of water are our common economic development highways connecting distant lands with bonds of friendship. In order to preserve and secure our shared global highways, and to maintain good order at sea, India, and in particular the Indian Navy, has always pro-actively engaged like-minded maritime nations," he said.
The President said that the presence of warships, personnel and delegations at the International Fleet Review aptly reflects and carries forward "our endeavour to highlight that we are 'United through Oceans'."
"IFR 2016 beckons nations across the world to join us in our quest to promote safety, security and stability across the oceans of the world," he said.
Mukherjee said that India has from the ancient times been a seafaring nation and Indus Valley had trade and cultural links with other countries of the world.
"Our seafarers have carried the message of peace to far corners of the world for several centuries. History has shown us that India's trade and commerce, and its very existence as an independent nation depends upon the safe and secure seas around it," he said.
He said it is today an indisputable fact that the independence and prosperity of all nations, and the peace and tranquillity of the world, hinge upon the security and stability of the seas and the oceans.
"I am confident that IFR 2016, and all associated events, will enable each one of us to further cement our bonds of friendship, and build on it to promote goodwill across the oceans," Mukherjee said.