The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) is a branch of the Indian Armed Forces. Its mission is the protection of India's maritime interests and maritime law enforcement with jurisdiction over both territorial (including contiguous zone & exclusive economic zone) and international waters.

ICG was formally established on 18th August 1978 as an armed force of the Union by the Coast Guard Act, 1978. It operates under the Department of Defence of the Union Ministry of Defence. It is particularly important to note that the " Coast Guard Act" was introduced under Entry 2 of List 1 in the Seventh Schedule to the Constituion of India. This is the same entry as for the Army, Navy and Air Force Acts.

The Coast Guard works in close cooperation with the Indian Navy, Department of Fisheries, Department of Revenue (Customs) and the Central and State police forces. The ICG is usually and currently headed by a naval officer of the rank of Vice-Admiral on deputation, although two of the Director Generals (the 12th and 16th), Rameshwar Singh and Prabhakaran Paleri, were from Indian Coast Guard.==Missions== The Indian Coast Guard's motto, in keeping with its missions, is वयम रक्षामः (Vayam Rakshamah), which translates from Sanskrit as We Protect. Its missions are:[2]

•  Protection of maritime resources
•  Maritime safety, search and rescue
•  Law enforcement in territorial as well as international waters
•  Protection of marine ecology and environment
•  Scientific data collection and support
•  Maritime defence support.