YFLO organised a session on endless possibilities in the blue economy

Hyderabad, June 28, 2024: Young FICCI Ladies Organisation (YFlO) organised a unique session on endless possibilities in the blue economy. The session titled “Beyond Horizons: A Marine Odyssey to Endless Possibilities”, gave a sneak peek into “The blue economy” is the economic activities associated with the oceans and seas.


Three eminent speakers spoke on the subject. They include Mr. Praful Talera, Governing Council Member of the Maritime Research Center, with expertise in the Blue Economy, The Maritime Research Center (MRC) is a not-for-profit and is a Foundation setup for Underwater Domain Awareness.

The other speaker was Captain Dilip Donde, the first Indian to complete a solo, unassisted circumnavigation of the globe under sail. Capt Dilip Donde is a retired Indian Naval officer. And the third speaker was our own Telugu woman from Hyderabad Ms.Aishwarya Boddapati, who was part of the first military crew in the world to circumnavigate the globe on INSV Tarini, with 10 years of service in the Indian Navy. She was part of the six-member all-women’s team of the Indian Navy, which made history by circumnavigating the globe in eight and half months

One of the guest speakers Mr Praful Talera, an expert in the Blue Economy addressing the 150-plus YFLO gathering said we are the only country in the world after whose name an ocean “the Indian Ocean” named. Our last conquerors Britishers invaded India through Sea. Even Azmal Kasab came from the sea route. The threat from sea looms large, especially in the ever-changing scenario of the geo-political situation. So, we need to explore the Blue Economy. Understand our waters. There are underwater drones. We need to be equipped to handle such a situation, he said.

India needs a Blue Economy Policy. As a nation, we have launched several policies to boost our blue economy efforts. In 2021 the Draft National Policy for Blue Economy aiming to enhance the GDP contribution of the ocean economy, improve the lives of coastal communities and preserve marine biodiversity was drafted. The Ministry of Earth Sciences is finalizing the National Policy on Blue Economy for the country. And the Hon’ble Prime Minister is most likely to launch soon the first of its kind a Blue Water Policy in India. Though I am not directly associated, I know of a task force which has been working on it for the past five years, he said.

Praful Talera spoke about Global commons, which are those parts of the planet that fall outside national jurisdictions and to which all nations have access. International law identifies four global commons, namely the High Seas(Blue Water), the atmosphere, Antarctica and Outer Space. Out of these four, the Blue Waters is the most neglected, he said. He emphasises that “Innovation in the maritime sector isn’t just about technology; it’s about sustainable progress for generations to come.”

Giving her opening remarks, Ridhi Jain, Chairperson of the Young FICCI Ladies Organization (YFLO), said the session embodies our quest to explore the vast blue horizons of the ocean, guided by the principles of the Blue Economy.

We are privileged to host Captain Dilip Donde, Aishwarya Boddapati and Mr Praful Talera. Together, they bring a wealth of knowledge and inspiration to the forefront of maritime discussion, she added.

Today is not just about hearing tales of triumph; it’s about igniting the spark of possibility within us all.

Aishwarya Boddpati shared her journey from her college to 10 years stint with the Indian Navy and an adventurous expedition. We were on the seawater for eight and a half months to complete our mission. We faced many challenges. Initially, I wondered why I joined this adventurous mission. But, slowly I got adjusted. We ran short of drinking water. We had to wait for the rain to collect water in the middle of the sea. On our return very close to India, our sailboat steering broke. We had to manage and balance air and sailboat, she said.

My parents hail from Vijayawada and Guntur. They always encouraged me to my career in Navi. I was born in Hyderabad. I feel proud to serve the nation. I was into the design and construction of ships after my education. I always feared the sea and water. I wanted to conquer that fear. That is why I chose the adventurous mission of circumnavigating the world.

Captain Dilip Donde, the first Indian to complete a solo, unassisted circumnavigation of the globe under sail shared his experiences and challenges. There was precedence as I was the first in the country to embark on it. Being the first I had to face a lot of challenges. There were regulatory challenges.

A career in the Navy is very challenging. I encourage many youngsters to get into the Indian Navy. India has a 7000 km coastline. The weather is good. Youth can also get in water sports, he said.