KARACHI                   -              The third cohort of Maritime Schools–Maritime Winter School 2020 (MWS 2020) – organised by Maritime Study Forum in partnership with the National Institute of Maritime Affairs (NIMA) and National Centre for Maritime Policy Research (NCMPR), concluded here at Bahria University on Saturday.

The MWS 2020 was a five-day event which was held under the theme, “Understanding maritime and coastal communities, maritime economy and policy, marine resources and hydrography, maritime security and diplomacy,” designed for researchers and scholars doing research in maritime domain across Pakistan. Among the participants were lawyers, media science students, IR, political science researchers, and many more.

Throughout the programme, maritime practitioners and academicians, including MSF President Dr Syed Muhammad Anwer, MSF Director Salman Javed, Maritime School Director Dr Aneel Salman, Rear Admiral Mukhtar Khan Jadoon, Commodore (r) Syed M. Obaidullah, Commodore M. Khalid, Dr Khurram Iqbal, Naufil Shahrukh and NCMPR Director Commodore (r) Ali Abbas explained different concepts of maritime to the participants in detail through lectures, exercises and field visits.

The hallmark of the school was the participants visiting important maritime locations namely Pakistan Maritime Security Agency (PMSA), National Institute of Oceanography (NIO), Karachi Port Trust (KPT), South Asia Pakistan Terminal (SAPT), Pakistan National Shipping Corporation (PNSC), Karachi Shipyard and Engineering Works (KS&EW) and Gadani ship breaking yard.

The participants also paid a visit to Haji Alano Goth near Gadani, Balochistan where they interacted with local villagers and talked to them about the problems the local fishermen are facing.

On the closing day of the five-day event, a seminar “Projecting Pakistan’s Maritime Potential through Mainstream & Alternative Media” was also held in which the panelists, consisting of electronic media, social media and maritime experts, talked about the role of media with regard to boosting and promoting maritime sector of Pakistan.

The panelist included Commodore (r) Syed M. Obaidullah, Daniyal Shaikh, Salman Parekh, Nadia Naqi and Owais Iqbal Baloch.

Afterwards, a closing ceremony of the Maritime Winter School 2020 was held in which Senator NuzhatSadiq, Chairperson Senate Standing Committee on Maritime Affairs, graced the occasion as Chief Guest and awarded certificates to the participants.

In her keynote address, Senator Nuzhat Sadiq congratulated Maritime Study Forum on organising another successful maritime school.

Commenting on prevailing maritime blindness, the Chairperson Senate Standing Committee on Maritime Affairs regretted the lack of maritime discourse in academia and in mainstream media that she said had kept the pressing issues of fishermen and labourers working along the coastal belt in dark.

She deplored the inability of the government to formulate effective and long lasting policies regarding the maritime sector.