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Home Minister gives new security gadget to Indian Navy, Coast Guard

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh formally hands over Resident Identity Card (RIC) readers to Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Navy Chief Admiral Robin Dhowan, Coast Guard Director General Vice-Admiral Anurag Thapliyal and others in New Delhi on Wednesday. Photo: PTI.

NEW DELHI (PTI): Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday gave away the first set of smart identity-checking scanners to the Chiefs of Indian Navy and the Indian Coast Guard which will be used by these maritime security agencies to check identity cards of the residents of coastal areas.

Singh handed over separate Resident Identity Card (RIC) readers to Navy Chief Admiral R K Dhowan and Coast Guard Director General Vice-Admiral A G Thapliyal at an event held in his North block office in the presence of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.

The scheme of preparing RICs for residents of coastal areas is being implemented by the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, an office under the Union Home Ministry, and it is aimed to strengthen coastal security measures in nine states and 4 Union Territories which have a sealine running along their borders.

Over 65 lakh people living in the coastal areas have been issued such RICs till now by the government.

The Union government is also preparing the National Population Registrar (NPR) in 3,331 coastal villages under the said scheme.

The card readers will be used by coastal security agencies to authenticate an individuals demographic and biometric authentication without using Internet services and have been manufactured by Indian technology firms-- Ms ITI Limited and Ms Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL).

"The card readers work on the principle of Key Management System and the cards can be read only when the key present in the RIC is authenticated by the Verification Authentication card," the Home Ministry said in a statement detailing the features of the new gadget released on Wednesday to the two maritime security agencies.

The statement said the RIC reader is "tamper-proof and self-destructs if it is opened in an unauthorised manner."

The gadget has earlier been put through sea-trials by the Navy and the Coast Guard.

"The office of Registrar and Census Commission has incorporated all the suggestions given by the Navy and Coast Guard in the designing of the RICs. These cards readers will initially be issued to the Navy and Coast Guard and later to the maritime police stations and state governments," the statement said.

Secretary (Border Management) Sneh Lata Kumar, Registrar General and Census Commissioner of India C Chandramouli and senior officials from the Defence and Home ministries were present on the occasion.


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