Holograms to Protect Fishing Vessels in India.
The state government of Kerala (India) has decided to introduce Holographic Registration Plates (HRPs) for 300 merchandised fishing vessels operating from the state.
With the number of fake fishing vessels in Kerala increasing, and the security forces finding it hard to trace unregistered vessels, the government has decided to install HRPs in an effort to crack down on unregistered fishing boats which infiltrate some coastal regions and have been found to be involved in criminal activities such as human trafficking.
The HRPs are being prepared and installed by the Centre for Development of Imaging Technology (C-DIT), with the aim of completing the process of installing all 300 mechanised fishing vessels within five months, sources have said.
With the installation of the HRPs, the government hopes to track fake fishing vessels quickly, ensure coastal security, recognise any unregistered vessels out in the sea and also help in conducting sea rescue operations effectively. Moreover, the new registration plate will also help in tracking the sale of fishing vessels and transfer of the vessels, the sources said.
At present the registration mark is applied to the hull of the boat or to the beading on the top of the wheel house. The markings are not clearly visible, even close-up, and as such the enforcement authorities find it difficult to trace the details of the vessel.
The new HRPs will be fixed on top of the wheel house. The plate is designed as a tetrahedron so it is visible from all sides. The security hologram is embossed in the plate in such a way that it is difficult to duplicate it. Moreover, the laser etched identification number for each plate makes each of the vessels unique.
S Venkatesapathy, Director, Fisheries Department said: 'HRP will prove extremely helpful in ensuring coastal security and vessel identification. It will also bring in uniformity. The department will seek C-DIT's aid for the preparation and installation of HRP. The project will be implemented through fisheries stations and is expected to be completed within five months.'
Sources said the department is also looking into the practicality of creating an HRP networking system for real-time monitoring of sea-going vessels by incorporating the HRP with GPS functionality. A microchip containing the details of the vessel and of the sailors/fishers in it is also likely to be fitted with it.
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