Foundation Stone Laid for an "International Training Centre for Operational Oceanography" at INCOIS
INVC NEWS Hyderabad, The Minister of State for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Shri. Y. S. Chowdary has said that Government wants to promote Operational Oceanography since it plays an important role in translating the benefits of science for the common public. Speaking after laying Foundation for the building complex of the International Training Centre for Operational Oceanography (ITCO-Ocean) at Hyderabad he said such benefits are in the form of Potential Fishing Zones advisories to fishermen, Ocean State Forecasts for mariners, Tsunami & Storm Surge Early warnings, etc. Since ESSO-INCOIS has already been at the fore front, providing such operational services, Government of India chose to establish ITCO- Ocean at ESSO-INCOIS, Hyderabad. Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES) has also signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) with IOC/UNESCO on July 4, 2013 to cooperate in capacity development programmes. He also remarked that this indicates the confidence of the international community in the achievements of India, especially in the field of operational oceanography. Toward this, Government of India has already allocated Rs.100 crores over a period of 5 years. He mentioned that the ITCO ocean building complex will comprise of the Academic block with an area of 80,000 Sq ft and an International Hostel with an area of 40,000 Sq ft., to be built at a cost of about 50 Cr. The new building complex is expected to be ready in about 18 months and will impart training programmes on operational oceanography to participants coming from all over the world and will also contribute to improving the local economy and employment opportunities. He also mentioned that the facility should be developed as an “area of interest” for students/visitors from all over the country so that public interest is generated in this important area. Speaking on the occasion, the Minister of State for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences Shri. Y. S. Chowdary informed that the International Training Centre for Operational Oceanography is being set up by Ministry of Earth Sciences, Govt. of India as a commitment of Govt. of India in helping the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in their capacity building efforts in areas of Operational Oceanography. Currently operating from the interim facility at ESSO- INCOIS, ITCO ocean has so far conducted six international and seven national training programmes by training more than 360 researchers, university students, state and central government officials from 22 countries - Australia, Bangladesh, Belgium, Comoros, Ghana, Iran, Italy, Kenya, Madagascar, Maldives, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Nigeria, Oman, Romania, Seychelles, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Togo, Yemen. A state-of-the-art 48 seater E-class room has been made operational in early 2014, with the facility to link different centres, organizations, and participants from across the globe.