The Rajya Sabha on Monday took up the Marine Aids to Navigation Bill, 2021 for consideration and passing. The Bill seeks to provide a framework for the development, maintenance, and management of aids to navigation in India. The Bill defines aid to navigation as a device, system, or service, external to the vessels designed and operated to enhance the safety and efficiency of navigation of vessels and vessel traffic. A vessel includes a ship, boat, sailing vessel, fishing vessel, submersible, and mobile offshore drilling units. It also proposes to impart training and certification to operator of aids to navigation, development of its historical, educational and cultural value. Its objective is also to ensure compliance with the obligation under the maritime treaties and international instruments to which India is a party.
While moving the bill amidst noisy scene, Shipping Minister Sarbananda Sonowal highlighted the importance of the legislation. Subhash Singh of BJD, Banda Prakash of TRS, K Ravindra Kumar of TDP and G K Wasan of Tamil Maanila Congress briefly spoke on the bill. The discussion remained inconclusive.