Earlier this year, the Department of Environment and Forest Union Territory of Lakshadweep Administration under the Scheme from the Ministry of the Environment, created 200 positions to establish anti-poaching camps on uninhabited islands and in all the protected areas of Lakshadweep under the “Development of Wildlife Habits” project in Lakshadweep. For each of the 200 positions, applicants were encouraged to earn a PADI® (Professional Association of Diving Instructors®) Open Water Diver certification prior to applying which would gain them 10 points on the admission criteria.

The Department of Environment & Forest Lakshadweep islands, are responsible for protection and conservation of fragile ecosystem, biodiversity and natural resources. During the pandemic the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change have created numerous employment opportunities for local islanders. Shri PP Mohammed Faisal, Hon’ble Member of Parliament, proposed a dedicated work force to safeguard Sea Cucumbers and other marine wildlife in Lakshadweep that was approved by central government.


The President cum Chief Counsillor of Lakshadweep, Shri Hassan Bodumukhagothi has formally Inaugurated the Training program for the newly recruited LAKSHADWEEP MARINE WILDLIFE PROTECTION FORCE (LMWPF) WATCHERS (200 posts) in the presence of the Secretary, Environment & Forest and Chief Wildlife Warden of Lakshadweep Shri Damodhar A.T., IFS and the Chairman of Kavaratti VDP Shri T. Abdul Khader at Kavaratti. These Watchers are going to become the part of uniformed frontline force of Lakshaweep Administration under the department of Environment & Forest under MoEF&CC. The trained senior Officers team under the Flying Squad Division is conducting this training for such unique force of Lakshaweep. During the course of training these Watchers will get exposure and learning from allied armed/uniform forces such as Indian Navy, Coastguard, Laksadweep police and IRBn officials. After the successful completion of the training these Watchers will be posted in Anti-poaching Camps of uninhabited Islands and other critical marine wildlife habitat in all the islands for the Protection of Marine Wildlife Heritage and fragile ecosystems of Lakshadweep Islands.

PADI Dive Centres in Lakshadweep assisted training locals in support of their applications. By earning the PADI Open Water Diver certification, Lakshadweep Islanders where able to gain employment during the difficult times caused by COVID-19 and help assist in the protection of Lakshadweep’s fragile marine environment.

PADI has been working in partnership with Lakshadweep Administration for many years helping to develop scuba diving tourism in the islands and training for local islanders to become scuba diving professionals.

Lakshadweep is a group of islands in the Lakshadweep Sea, 200-400km off the southern west coast of India. The smallest Union Territory of India, Lakshadweep is an archipelago consisting of 12 atolls, three reefs and five submerged banks. It is a uni-district Union Territory with an area of 32 square kilometres and is comprised of 10 inhabited islands, 17 uninhabited islands with attached islets, four newly formed islets and five 5 submerged. The main occupations of the local people are fishing, coconut cultivation and coir twisting, with tourism being an emerging industry.

Given its location, Lakshadweep is becoming ever popular with scuba divers due to its picturesque location and diverse marine environment.

For more information, contact a PADI Dive Centre or Resort in Lakshadweep or to learn more about Lakshadweep diving, read our ‘Lakshadweep: India’s Best Kept Secret‘ blog.

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