Islamabad: (Parliament Times) Pakistan Navy observed World Hydrography Day with enthusiasm and with an aim to create awareness about the importance of Hydrography and its role towards blue economy & overall national growth.
Every year on 21 June, World Hydrography Day is celebrated across the world, under the auspices of International Hydrographic Organization, to draw worldwide attention towards the importance of hydrography and to appreciate the work done in this important field in support of safe navigation at open seas, ports and other protected marine areas around the globe.
The theme selected for this year is “Hydrography – enabling autonomous technologies” which highlights the significant role of Hydrography for optimizing use of autonomous technologies in hydrographic processes. Autonomous platforms such as Autonomous Surface Vehicles (ASV) and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) equipped with Laser based hydrography systems can be used to conduct high resolution and autonomous Hydrographic Surveys.
Pakistan is blessed with over 1000 Kms of coastline and an area of around 290,000 Sq Km at sea. More than 90% of Pakistan’s trade by volume and 70% by value is carried out through Arabian sea. As per Conventions on Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), Pakistan like other coastal states, is responsible for carrying out hydrographic surveys and production of nautical charts/ maps to provide accurate information to the mariners for safe sea passage. In this regard, Pakistan Navy Hydrographic Department is aptly fulfilling this international obligation, to ensure availability of updated information for mariners who traverse through the busy shipping lanes along Pakistan’s coast round the year.
Pakistan Navy remains abreast with modern trends in Hydrographic Surveys and has recently inducted a new survey vessel PNS BEHR MASAH in its inventory. The ship is equipped with state of the art hydrographic, physical oceanographic and geophysical survey equipment. Pakistan Navy Hydrographic Department is also utilizing some of the autonomous technologies to enhance identification of underwater objects besides operating autonomous aerial platforms for coastal topographic surveys.
Pakistan Navy, being the sole proprietor of National Hydrographic domain of the country, observes the day with zeal and enthusiasm. Numerous activities were arranged throughout the year which included awareness events, Lectures & Seminars, Marine research activities on significance of the day as well as Social Media Campaigns. Amidst the ongoing crisis of COVID-19 activities, while avoiding/ involving social gatherings, the efforts have now been focused on display of banners, distribution of pamphlets, publications of articles and telecast of event specific documentaries. Such events played a pivotal role in enhancing awareness regarding importance of Hydrography amongst the general populace.