For India, the Science of Oceanography is a young science. It began in an organized fashion during the early sixties and in less than twenty-eight years, it has made spectacular progress. As time passes, our dependence on the sea is rapidly increasing. Since ancient times, sea has been used for two main purposes-fishing and shipping, but the recent discovery of offshore oil and gas, other minerals, chemicals, drugs and energy extraction has convinced every one that some of the biggest treasures of the world lie hidden in the sea. Thus the ocean is called “our last frontier” and mankind is looking towards the sea as our future hope. The old saying that the country which controls the sea rules over the earth, has proved to be true beyond doubt.
It has been estimated that the available land per person in the early part of the next century will be reduced to about half of the area available today for different activities of human beings. In many parts of the world, land is not readily available. Even if it is available, the pressure on land for agriculture, housing , industries and other activities is so enormous that it will go on reducing progressively for each of our needs. Therefore, in our strategy for future planning we will have to consider first what will be the population trend and what the oceans really offer to be called as the future hope of mankind.
Extracts from “OCEAN – THE FUTURE HOPE OF MAN KIND” by Dr. Qasim, Vice Chancellor of Jamia Milia Islamia Central University