Defence: NAVY Year End Review 2017
1. IDEX/ NAVDEX 17 at UAE. INS Sunayna was deployed to Abu Dhabi, UAE from 10 Feb-12 Mar 17 to participate in the International Defence Expo 2017 (IDEX 17) and Naval Defence Maritime Security Expo 17 (NAVDEX 17).
2. Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) – 2017. LIMA is a biennial maritime exhibition organised by the Malaysian Navy. It is aimed at improving maritime cooperation and bringing together military and civil industrial partnership. IN has been participating regularly in LIMA. This year, IN ship Kora participated in LIMA 17 at Langkawi, Malaysia, from 20 – 26 Mar 17.
3. Overseas Deployment of Eastern Fleet Ships. Ships of the Eastern Fleet comprising INS Sahyadri, Shivalik, Kamorta, and Jyoti were deployed to the Southern Indian Ocean and Western Pacific in May-Jun 17. The ships made port calls at Singapore, Kuantan, Jakarta, Surabaya, Port Moresby and Fremantle.
4. Eastern Fleet OSD for ASEAN and INDRA 17. EF ships Satpura and Kadmatt were deployed for ASEAN International Fleet Review (IFR) and INDRA-17, an annual bilateral exercise with the Russian Navy.
5. International Maritime Review (IMR). The IMR was held by Singapore Navy on 15 May 17 to commemorate its 50 years. The Indian delegation for IMR was headed by Admiral Sunil Lanba, PVSM, AVSM, ADC, the Chief of Naval Staff. IN ships Sahyadri and Kamorta participated in the IMR.
6. Seychelles National Day Celebrations. INS Sunayna visited Seychelles from 26-30 Jun 17 to participate in Seychelles National Day celebrations. A march past was carried out by a naval contingent from the ship and chetak helicopter participated in the Fly Past activities.
7. Overseas Deployment of Western Fleet Ships. Four ships of the Western Fleet proceeded on Overseas Deployment to the Mediterranean Sea/ Atlantic Ocean. One of these ships also called on five ports in the West Coast of Africa. The ships visited Port Said and Alexandria (Egypt), Souda Bay (Greece), Toulon (France), Valencia (Spain), Haifa (Israel), Jeddah (Saudi Arabia),Plymouth(UK), London(UK), Lisbon(Portugal), Casablanca(Morocco), Lagos(Nigeria), Luanda(Angola), Port Walvis(Namibia), Cape Town(South Africa), Port Louis(Mauritius) and Valencia (Spain).
8. First Training Squadron – Overseas Deployments. The first Training Squadron comprising IN Ships Tir, Sujata, Shardul, Tarangini, Sudarshini and Indian Coast Guard Ship Varuna are responsible for Sea training of Executive branch officers after they complete their training at Indian Naval Academy. The ships undertake deployment across the Indian Ocean to teach the nuances of life at sea to trainee officers. The sail training ships, Tarangini and Sudarshini undertook oceanic voyages to nurture the art of sailing amongst young officers. The details of overseas deployment in 2017 are given below:
|(a)||Tir Shardul Sujata Sarathi||March 02 – April 02, 2017||Port Louis, Port Victoria and Male||Spring term 2017|
|(b)||Sudarshini||March 05 – April 04, 2017||Port Victoria|
|(c)||Tir Sujata Sarathi and Shardul||October 03 – November 06, 2017||Penang, Jakarta and Colombo||Autumn term 2017|
|(d)||Sudarshini||October 03 – November 07, 2017||Jakarta|
9. INSailing Vessel (INSV) Mhadei. INSV Mhadei, with all women crew (06 officers), departed Goa on 02 Nov 16 and arrived Cape Town on 23 Dec 16. Thereafter, the vessel participated in Cape to Rio Race 2017, with 06 officers onboard (including 02 lady officers). On successful completion of the race she entered Rio de Janeiro on 22 Jan 17 and departed on 01 Feb 17. Subsequently, the ship entered Cape Town, South Africa on 25 Feb 17 and arrived Goa on 22 May 17.
10. Navika Sagar Parikarma. Six naval women officers are undertaking Navika Sagar Parikrama on an Indian-built 56 feet long Sailing Vessel, INSV Tarini. This is first Indian all-women crew circumnavigation of the globe under sail. Expedition was flagged-off from Goa on 10 Sep 17 and is expected to return to Goa in Apr 18.
11. Ex Taiyaar-17. Ex Taiyaar 17 was conducted in Jan 17. The exercise is an annual feature which allows the Naval Commands to fully prepare and exercise transition from a state of peace to one of hostilities and address any shortcomings that may be encountered. Various facets that were exercised included Op logistics, action stripping, Mine & War watching organisation, deployments by Fast Intercepter Crafts (FICs), acceleration of Refit etc.
12. TROPEX-17. A Theatre Level Operational Exercise – TROPEX 17, was conducted on the Western Seaboard in Jan-Feb 17. Extensive participation of Army, Air force and the Coast Guard, including Marine Commandos (MARCOS) and Para Special Force (SF) was the highlight of this year’s exercise.
13. Joint Amphibious Workup. Joint amphibious workup by IN and Indian Army was conducted from 19 – 31 Mar 17 off Karwar.IN ships Jalashwa and Gharial along with over 1000 personnel of 91 Infantry Brigade of Army participated in the exercise.
14. Exercise PARIKSHAN. Western Naval Command conducted operational level Table Top Tri-Service wargame titled ‘Exercise PARIKSHAN’ from 07-09 Aug 17. Representatives from Naval Headquarters, and operational commands of the Army and Air Force in the region also participated in the wargame.
15. DANX – 17. The Joint Services Exercise ‘Defence of Andaman and Nicobar Exercise’ (DANX-17) was conducted in Andaman & Nicobar Command from 20-25 Nov 17. IN/ICG Ships, IN/IAF/ICG aircraft and Army troops from ANC and other Commands of IN, IA & IAF participated in the exercise. The successful conduct of the exercise proved unparalleled synergy achieved at ANC between the three services.
Exercises with Foreign Navies
16. Exercise MALABAR 2017. The 21st edition of Ex Malabar was conducted at/ off the port of the East Coast of India from 09-17 Jul 17. IN, US Navy and the Japan Maritime Self – Defence Force (JMSDF) participated in the exercise. The primary objective of the exercise was to enhance maritime cooperation and interoperability amongst the participating navies. A total of 16 ships, 02 submarines, 95 aircraft, Marine Commandos (MARCOs) and Special Forces (SFs) participated in the exercise.
17. VARUNA 17. The Western Fleet ships participated in bilateral exercise VARUNA 17 with French Navy in Apr 17 off Toulon, France. INS Trishul, Mumbai and Aditya along with integral helicopters, participated in the Exercise.
18. KONKAN 17. INS Tarkash participated in bilateral Exercise Konkan 17 with Royal Navyin May 17 off UK. Ship visited Plymouth and London during the exercise and also participated in HMS Tricomalee Bi-centenary year celebrations and cultural events at London as part of ‘India-UK Year of Culture’.
19. Exercise SIMBEX. Ex – SIMBEX, the annual bilateral exercise with Republic of Singapore Navy was conducted at Singapore from 12 – 21 May 17. IN ships Shivalik, Sahyadri,Kamorta and Jyoti participated in the exercise. The ships also participated in the International Maritime Defence Exhibition during the period.
20. Exercise Indra 2017. Indo-Russia Joint Tri-Services Exercise INDRA-17 was conducted off Vladivostok, Russian Federation from 19-29 Oct 17. This was the first ever Tri-Services bilateral military exercise between the two countries. The Naval Operations of exercise were conducted off Vladivostok in the Sea of Japan (Peter the Great Bay). The amphibious operations were conducted at Cape Klerk, about 30 nm SW of Vladivostok. The exercise was conducted in the following Phases:
(a) Harbour Phase – 19-24 Oct 17 at Vladivostok
(b) Sea Phase – 25-28 Oct 17 off Vladivostok/ Cape Klerk
21. AUSINDEX 2017. The second edition of biennial Australia-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (AUSINDEX) was conducted at/ off Fremantle, Australia. The exercise was conducted from 13-19 Jun 17. The Harbour Phase of AUSINDEX-17 was conducted at Fremantle (HMAS Stirling) from 13-16 Jun 17. The Sea Phase was conducted off West coast of Australia in the Western Australia Exercise Areas (WAXA) from 17-19 Jun 17.
22. SLINEX 17. The Eastern Naval Command hosted Sri Lanka-India Naval Exercise, SLINEX 17, from 07-14 Sep 17. Srilanka Naval Ships Sayura and Sagara and IN Ships Gharial and Kora participated in the exercise. Harbour phase included various training interactions. The Sea phase was conducted from 11-14 Sep 17.
Coastal Security and Anti-Piracy Operations
23. Coastal Security. IN and ICG ships and aircraft in coordination with each other are adequately deployed for Coastal and Offshore Development Areas security. In addition the following were undertaken by IN units:
(a) Coastal Security Exercise ‘SagarKavach’. Coastal security exercises ‘SagarKavach’ were conducted throughout the year.
(b) Op Avloka. IN ships are being deployed for Op Avloka (off Gujarat and Maharashtra coast) for coastal surveillance during the monsoons since 2010, to undertake coastal surveillance.
(c) Op Avardhan. IN aircraft are deployed for Op Avardhan to maintain continuous aerial coastal surveillance of the West coast of India including L&M Islands. Similar sorties are also undertaken in the East coast and the A&N Islands to augment coastal surveillance along with IN ships.
24. Anti-Piracy Patrol. As part of its wider role of providing security to shipping in the Indian Ocean Region, the Indian Navy continues to deploy one ship for anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden. A total of 65 IN warships have been deployed till Dec 17, which have safely escorted more than 3788 (including 405 Indian flagged) ships with over 24,858 mariners embarked. Till date the IN has thwarted 44 piracy attempts and apprehended 120 pirates. The INremains committed to ensuring Good Order at sea in the Indian maritime zones, and towards ensuring freedom of navigation in the high seas including off Somalia. IN’s presence in this region is being maintained to ensure safety and security of Indian trade.
25. There has been an increase in piracy activities in the Gulf of Aden/ off Somali coast in 2017, as compared to the last four years. IN ships have been instrumental in thwarting following piracy attempts in the Gulf of Aden. Details of IN contribution are given below:
(a) Indian Dhow Al – Kausar. An Indian dhow, AlKausar was hijacked on 01 Apr 17. IN ship Sharda, deployed for anti – piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden since 06 Apr 17,was diverted off Hobyo, Somalia to monitor the situation and render necessary assistance to the dhow. On release after negotiations, Al Kausar was safely escorted by Sharda to Kismayo, Somalia. During the passage to Kismayo, the dhow was approached by two skiffs; however, Sharda prevented any further incident.
(b) Bulk Carrier OS35. In another incident of piracy attack, a Bulk Carrier, OS 35 (with 19 Filipino crew onboard) reported piracy attack on 08 Apr 17. IN ships Mumbai,Tarkash, Trishul and Aditya operating in the area were diverted to provide assistance. PLA (N) ship was also in the area. IN undertook continuous aerial surveillance to sanitise the upper decks of the merchant ship and one Prahar was made stand-by. Under the aerial surveillance of the IN helo and on receiving ‘all clear signal’ from the IN that no pirates were visible on the upper decks, PLA(N) personnel boarded the ship. It was ascertained that pirates had abandoned/ fled the ship.
(c) Suspicious Skiffs. On 16 May 17, based on an alarm raised by Merchant Vessel Lord Mountbatten, Sharda apprehended two mother boats along with 7-8 skiffs. Ship undertook boarding and search operations, during which arms and ammunition were confiscated and thereafter boats were released in absence of any other piracy triggers.
(d) MV JagAmar. Whilst escorting Indian flagged vessel MV JagAmar (with 26 Indian crew onboard) in the Gulf of Aden on 06 Oct 17, INSTrishul detected a pirate boat carrying out manoeuvres in the vicinity of the merchant vessel. Trishul closed the boat for investigation and launched her helicopter (with sniper embarked) towards the boat immediately. Under the surveillance of the helicopter, ship’s boat with Prahar (Marine Commandos) boarded the pirate boat. All the piracy triggers including the AK 56 with rounds were confiscated by the ship’s boarding team to prevent any piratical action by the boat crew. All Indian crew onboard MV Jag Amar was safe and the merchant vessel safely proceeded to her next port of call.
26. 36th Indian Scientific Expedition to Antarctica.Hydrographic survey team consisting of one Long Hydrography course qualified officer and one Hydrographic sailor participated in 36th Indian Scientific Expedition to Antarctica from Dec 16 to Mar 17 for surveying India Bay area.
27. Operational Sea Training – Foreign Ships. The maiden Staff Sea Checks (SSC) as part of Operational Sea training of Seychelles Coast Guard Ship Topaz (06-11 Feb 17) and Mauritius Coast Guard Ship Valiant (08-13 May 17) was undertaken which was tailor made to suit the respective ships and their equipment fit.
28. SAR Operations at Maldives. The Indian Navy was intimated by DA, Male about a SAR request from the Government of Maldives on 19 May 17, regarding a civilian Landing Craft Maria 3 with six crew (including a lady) being missing. Immediately an Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) of the Indian Navy which is deployed at Maldives was launched and IN ship Kirch which was deployed for EEZ surveillance of Maldives was diverted to the search area. Subsequently, on 20 May 17 an IN Dornier aircraft was deployed to augment the SAR operations. The Dornier detected Maria 3 and directed Kirch to the Landing Craft. Despite inclement weather and rough seas, Kirch rescued all the crew members of Maria 3 and safely handed over the crew members to the Government of Maldives.
29. 33rd Annual National Conference of the Marine Medicine and Allied Sciences. The 33rd Annual National Conference of the Marine Medicine and Allied Sciences was held at INHS Asvini, Mumbai from 31 Aug-01 Sep 17. The event served as a platform for multi-dimensional imbibing of ideas and concepts in the field of Naval medical services. 22 Delegates from 09 FFNs (Friendly Foreign Navies) (Indonesia, UAE, US, Bangladesh, Kenya, Oman, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Vietnam) participated in the conference.
30. Foreign Service Attaches.A visit of Foreign Service Attaches (FSAs) was organised at Kochi on 21 Aug 17, and at Indian Naval Academy (INA) from 22-24 Aug 17.
31. Relief Material to Bangladesh by INS Gharial. As an aftermath of the Rohingya refugee crisis in Bangladesh, INS Gharial, an amphibious ship was loaded with 777 tons of relief material which was handed over to the Bangladesh Govt from 25-28 Sep 17.
32. Bangladesh Relief Operations. IN ship Sumitra, based on anticipation, was deployed in the Northern Bay of Bengal to provide immediate assistance in the aftermath of Cyclone ‘Mora’. During this deployment, the ship rescued 33 Bangladeshis found stranded at sea and also recovered one body. On completion of search and rescue operation at sea, Sumitra entered Chittagong AM 01 Jun 17 for rendering HADR assistance. Govt of Bangladesh conveyed their gratitude to the Government of India and the crew members of IN ship Sumitra for rescuing Bangladeshi nationals at sea under difficult circumstances and for the relief supplies.
33. Relief Operations in Myanmar. After sailing from Chittagong, IN ship Sumitraproceeded to provide relief assistance to Myanmar, post cyclone ‘Mora’. The ship visited Yangon from 06 – 08 Jun 17 during which she provided necessary assistance.
34. SAR Operations for Missing Crew of Mexican Ship Cuauhtemoc. A lady cadet had fallen overboard from Mexican Sail Training Ship Cuauhtemoc, on 11 Jun 17 in position 560 nm West of Goa. A total of four P8I aircraft sorties were undertaken from 11 – 13 Jun 17 for SAR. IN ships Teg and Mysore (with one Chetak and one SK 42B) were also deployed to undertake SAR operations. Unfortunately, the body of the lady Cadet was not sighted and the search was called off by the Mexican authorities on 16 Jun 17. Mexican Embassy conveyed its deep gratitude for the prompt and significant search effort mounted by the IN.
35. SAR Operations at Port Moresby. As part of the Eastern Fleet OSD, IN ship Sahyadrientered Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea (PNG) on 12 Jun 17. The Embassy of India, PNG requested the ship to undertake SAR operations to locate a PNG fishing vessel which was suspected to have sunk approximately 7nm from the coast off Port Moresby with four crew (two Fijians of Indian origin and two PNG nationals) onboard. Chetak helicopter (ex-Sahyadri) was launched and the capsized fishing vessel was detected. The ship informed the exact position of the capsized fishing vessel to the PNG authorities. Whereas one crew member swam ashore earlier, the three remaining crew members were not sighted by the helicopter.
36. Assistance to Iranian Boat. At 1215 h (IST) on23 Nov 17, INS Trikand received a distress call from an Iranian Trawler ‘Sheetab’ in the Gulf of Oman. The trawler had 20 crew (all Iranian) onboard, including two2 minors, and was adrift for five days due to engine failure. Trawler was also short of water and rations. Technical crew of INS Trikand undertook repairs of the trawler. Requisite amount of Lub Oil, fresh water and provisions was also provided to the trawler after which it proceeded towards her destination. INS Trikand’s assistance significantly helped stricken Iranian trawler crew and restored operational availability of the boat.
37. Goa Maritime Conclave (GMC). The maiden ‘Goa Maritime Conclave’ (GMC) was conducted at Naval War College, Goa from 01 to 02 Nov 17. Chiefs of Navy/ Heads of Maritime Agency/ representatives of Bangladesh, Indonesia, Maldives, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand attended the Conclave. The event was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman at Naval War College, Goa on 01 November 2017. The Conclave was aimed at ‘Addressing Regional Maritime Challenges’ wherein the deliberations were focused on emerging maritime threats and force structuring, maritime domain awareness, maritime security architecture, and maritime security challenges in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
38. Hydrographic Assistance.
(i) Survey of Tanzania.INS Darshak was deployed for 33 days from 26 Oct 16, for the survey of Port Tanga. INS Sarvekshak has been deployed for 41 days from 14 Nov 17 to Tanzania for the conduct of hydrographic surveys based on requests received from Government of Tanzania. The deployment of IN surveying ships to East Africa and successful completion of surveys has once again proved Indian Navy’s reach and capability and has contributed immensely towards strengthening the bilateral relations.
(ii) Survey of Mauritius. INS Darshak was deployed for 31 days from 03 Dec 16 to Mauritius for the conduct of hydrographic surveys based on requests received from Government of Mauritius.
(iii) Survey of Sri Lanka. INS Darshak was deployed for 56 days from 03 Mar 17 whilst INS Sutlej has been deployed for 59 days from 24 Oct 17 to Sri Lanka for the conduct of hydrographic surveys based on request received from Government of Sri Lanka.
39. Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Surveillance. The IN regularly undertakes EEZ surveillance of Maldives, Mauritius and Seychelles.
(a) EEZ Surveillance of Maldives. During EEZ surveillance a special team from Cankarso consisting of IN divers carried out underwater hull welding onboard Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) ship Huravee, thereby enabling the operational availability of the ship to the MNDF.
(b) EEZ Surveillance of Seychelles and Mauritius. IN ship Tarkash was deployed for EEZ surveillance and provided Outer Island Support to Seychelles and Mauritius from 21 Oct – 09 Nov 17. The ship undertook personnel and stores transfer from Port Louis to outer Island (which is about 600nm North of Port Louis) including transhipment of generator parts which were considered critical for providing electricity to the island.
40. Assistance to Merchant Vessel (MV) MSCDaniela. The High Commissioner of India, Colombo requested for Indian Navy’s assistance to MV MSC Daniela (a Panama flagged container vessel) that had reported a fire onboard on 04 Apr 17, 24 nm West of Colombo. INships Darshak and Gharial along with Indian Coast Guard ship Shoor were deployed to undertake fire fighting operations. Darshak’s helicopter was utilised for locating the seat of fire and directing fire fighting efforts which were undertaken by CGS shoor. The fire was brought under control on 06 Apr 17 and all crew were reported to be safe.
41. Supply of Water Jet Fast Patrol Vessels. India supplied two Water Jet Fast Patrol Vessels to Mauritius Coast Guard. The vessels named Valiant and Victory were constructed at M/s GSL under Indian Navy’s supervision. Naval ships towed both the ships to Mauritius where they were commissioned into Mauritius Coast Guard on 10 Dec 16 and 16 Aug 17 respectively.
42. Commissioning of SLNS Sayurala. The first AOPV built by M/s Goa Shipyard Limited was handed over to Sri Lanka on 22 Jul 17. The AOPV was commissioned as SLNS Sayuralaon 02 Aug 17 at Colombo by the Sri Lankan President. Vice Admiral AR Karve, FOC-in-C (South), attended the commissioning ceremony.
43. Medium Refit of Seychelles Patrol Ship Topaz. Seychelles Coast Guard ship Patrol Ship Topaz underwent Medium Refit at Naval Dockyard (Visakhapatnam) from Feb 16 to Jan 17. On completion of refit, the ship was ceremonially handed over to the Seychelles Coast Guard Commander on 16 Feb 17. The ship was thereafter towed back to Seychelles by INS Suvarna.
44. IN Dornier Detachment to Colombo, Sri Lanka. IN Dornier aircraft detachment was deployed to Colombo, Sri Lanka from 19 – 22 Jun 17. The Dornier detachment undertook training of eight Sri Lankan Navy personnel and five Sri Lankan Air Force personnel on operational capability of the Dornier including conduct of Search and Rescue operations.
Navy to Navy Interaction
45. Passing out Parade of INA, Reviewed by Commander of Sri Lankan Navy. VAdm Ravindra C Wijegunaratne, Commander of Sri Lankan Navy visited Indian Naval Academy (INA) from 26-27 May 17 for reviewing of the Passing Out Parade (POP). This is the first occasion of a foreign dignitary reviewing the Passing Out Parade at INA.
46. Exercises for IOR Littorals. In a significant step taken towards synergising our HADR efforts with that of our neighbours, the Indian Navy invited ‘Observers’ from Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh and Myanmar to participate in the ‘Annual Tri-Service HADR Exercise‘ conducted by the Indian Navy from 18 to 20 May 17 on the Western Coast. Further, to expose mid-level leaders of IOR littoral nations to Blue Water operations, the Indian Navy conducted ‘Exercise SAMBANDH‘, from 25 to 25 Oct 17, wherein the Indian Navy’s capabilities were showcased to ‘Observers’ from 18 Friendly Foreign Countries, which included, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Mauritius, Maldives, Seychelles, Mozambique, Oman, Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia, Iran, Kenya, UAE, Malaysia, Qatar, Tanzania and Madagascar.
47. Refit of Mauritius Coast Guard Ship Guardian. IN is presently undertaking Service Life Extension Refit of MCGS Guardian at Naval Dockyard, Mumbai w.e.f. 01 Dec 17 for a duration of six months.
48. Repair Assistance to Sri Lanka Navy Ship Sagara. Based on a request from Sri Lanka, refilling of two Halon bottles of Fire Fighting System of SLNS Sagara was undertaken. The empty bottles were transported from Colombo by an IN Dornier, refilled by Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam and installed onboard during the Ship’s port visit during SLINEX-17.
49. Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS). The IONS presently has 23 member countries with 09 countries being given observer status. Bangladesh is the current ‘Chair’ of IONS. The construct has become an important Maritime construct to promote maritime cooperation amongst the member countries. Accordingly, during the Conclave of Chiefs, held in Dhaka in Jan 16, among many important issues discussed, it was decided to conduct the IONS Multilateral Maritime Search and Rescue Exercise (IMMSAREX) in Bangladesh in Nov 2017.Also, IONS Working Group (IWG) Meetings on HADR and Information Sharing & Interoperability were conducted from 29 to 30 Jun at Mumbai and 25 to 26 Jul 17 at Islamabad respectively. The IONS Preparatory Workshop (IPW) to finalise the agenda for discussions during the next ‘Conclave of Chiefs’ was held at Pretoria, South Africa from 03 to 06 Oct 17. The IMMSAREX was conducted at Cox Bazar, Bangladesh from 26 to 29 Nov 17. CNS attended the Extraordinary Conclave of Chiefs (ECoC) conducted by Bangladesh on the side-lines of IMMSAREX on 28 Nov 17.
50. Navy-to-Navy Staff Talks. The Indian Navy held Staff Talks with the navies of a host of friendly countries during the year.Extensive discussions on maritime cooperation and bilateral issues were held with Bangladesh, France, Singapore, Maldives, Myanmar, Thailand, United Kingdom, UAE, Russia, Indonesia and Oman (inaugural), during the ‘Staff Talks’. Operation interaction, cooperation in hydrography, training and sharing of White Shipping Information are a few common issues discussed during the ‘Staff Talks’.
51. Admiral’s Cup. ‘Admiral’s Cup’ sailing regatta is being conducted annually by Indian Navy in Laser (Radial) class at Indian Naval Academy (INA) at Ezhimala, Kerala since 2010. The sailing teams comprising Naval officer cadets/ midshipmen and one Officer-in-Charge as team coordinator are invited from Friendly Foreign Countries (FFCs) to participate in the event. The event has also seen women participants from some of the Friendly Foreign Countries. The Admiral’s Cup Sailing Regatta has gained popularity over the years and each consecutive edition has seen wider participation. During Admiral’s Cup 2017 held at INA from 02-08 Dec 17, 27 foreign countries participated.
Commissioning and Decommissioning
52. Commissioning of INS Kiltan. INS Kiltan, the third ship of Project-28 Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW) Corvette was commissioned by the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri on 16 Oct 17. Commissioning of Kiltan is an affirmation of India’s expertise in design and building of sophisticated warships and is a major step in pursuance of self-reliance through indigenisation. The ship has been designed by the Indian Navy’s in house design organisation, Directorate of Naval Design, and built by M/s Garden Reach Ship Builders and Engineers Ltd Kolkata. INS Kiltan is the first major warship with entire superstructure made of carbon fiber reinforced composite material. Weapons and Sensors have been installed/ interfaced on a Composite Super Structure for the first time on a major warship like INS Kiltan.
53. Commissioning of Landing Craft Utility (Mk IV). The first ship of the eight INLCU (Mark IV) Project, namely IN LCU L51, was commissioned on 28 Mar 17 at Port Blair by Vice Admiral Bimal Kumar Verma, AVSM, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Andaman and Nicobar Command. The second ship, IN LCU L52, was commissioned on 21 Aug 17 at Port Blair by Dr. Jagdish Mukhi, Lieutenant Governor, Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
54. Commissioning of INS Tillanchang and INS Tarasa. The third and fourth ships (Tillanchang and Tarasa) of the four Follow On Waterjet Fast Attack Craft Project were Commissioned on 09 Mar and 26 Sep 17 at Karwar and Mumbai respectively.
55. Commissioning of INS Kalvari. The first submarine of P-75, Kalvari, is scheduled for commissioning on 14 Dec 17.
56. Decommissioning. The Navy bid adieu to the aircraft carrier, INS Viraat, after an illustrious service of 30 years in the Indian Navy on 06 Mar 17. Indian Naval ships Agray, Matanga, Karwar, Kakinada and submarine Sindhurakshak were also de-commissioned in 2017.
57. De-induction of TU 142 Long Range Maritime Aircraft. The TU 142 M Long Range Maritime Aircraft of the Indian Navy were de-inducted on 29 Mar 17 at INS Rajali after rendering 29 years of yeoman service to the nation.
Launching of Ships
58. NOPVs – Shachi and Shruti. The first two ships of the series of five Naval Offshore Patrol Vessels, Shachi and Shruti, were launched in tandem on 25 Jul 17 by Smt Preeti Luthra, wife of the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, PVSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC at RNEL Shipyard, Pipavav, Gujarat.
59. Yard 11876 (Khanderi). The 2nd submarine of Project-75, namely Khanderi (Yard 11876), was launched on 12 Jan 17 at MDL by Mrs. Bina Bhamre, wife of RRM, Dr. Subash Bhamre.
60. Floating Dock Navy -2. FDN-2, being constructed at M/s L&T Shipyard at Kattupalli, was launched on 20 Jun 17 at Kattupalli near Chennai. The FDN-2 would be capable of docking ships with draft up to 7 metres and displacement up to 8000 tons.
61. Start of Production – Project 17A. Seven ships of Project 17A class of frigates are being indigenously constructed at M/s MDL, Mumbai (04 ships) and M/s GRSE, Kolkata (03 ships). Contract for these seven ships was signed on 20 Feb 15. These ships are being built using Integrated Construction methodology. P17A frigates would be fitted with advanced weapon and sensors suite and will have enhanced ‘sleek and stealth’ features. Steel cutting ceremony, commemorating the ‘Start of Production’ of First of Class (FOC) of P17A was held on 16 Feb 17.
Important Events of Interest
62. MP/ MLA Day at Sea. In pursuance of the Hon’ble PM’s directives, a Day at Sea was conducted for MPs/ MLAs of Kerala State off Kochi on 10 Jan 17. The aim of this event was to provide an overview of the coastal security architecture of India and to assist the senior leadership of the state to appreciate the threats and challenges that can come from the sea.
63. Operational Demonstration at Vijaywada. Based on a request from the State Govt of AP, a mini naval demo was conducted at Vijaywada from 02-04 Feb 17. The demo showcased the good work being done by the Navy through setting up professional and recruitment stalls and demonstrations of SAR , watermanship activities, and beating retreat by the naval band.
64. Award of President’s Colours to Submarine Arm on the Occasion of Golden Jubilee of the Submarine Arm. The Hon’ble President awarded President’s Colours to the submarine Arm of the Indian Navy on 08 Dec 17 at Visakhapatnam.
65. Coast to Coast Outreach Programme – Valsura. As part of the platinum Jubilee celebration of INS Valsura, the Indian Navy commemorated the event with a unique “Coast to Coast” social outreach programme to connect with the children and youth of the country along both coasts. A mega road trip in five cars covered a distance of 6000 kms touching all major naval establishments and places of Naval Maritime Heritage enroute. The Naval team interacted with local populace, war veterans and widows and visited schools and colleges to spread awareness about the Indian Navy.
66. Indian National Cartographic Association (INCA). The 37th International Congress of the Indian National Cartographic Association (INCA) was organised by the National Hydrographic Office, Dehradun from 01-03 Nov 17. The Hon’ble Governor of Uttarakhand Dr. KK Paul was the Chief Guest. The Congress was attended by over 300 prominent scientists, academia and cartographers from various government departments and universities. Over 60 professional paper on the theme “Geoinformatics for Carto diversity and its Management” was presented in the congress.
67. Safety Award by Govt of Kerala. A number of Safety initiatives have been taken by various units of the Navy. A notable achievement was Naval Aircraft Yard (Kochi) being assessed by the Dept of Factories and Boilers, Kerala State for implementation of various safety measures and was adjudged the winner.
68. International Military Music Festival “Spasskaya Tower”. The International Military Music Festival “Spasskaya Tower” is the parade of the best military music bands of Russia and other countries that takes place every year at Red Square in Moscow. Every year about 1500 musicians, military men and other artists from around 40 countries perform at the “Spasskaya Tower”. The Indian Tri- Services Band comprising of 07 Officers and 55 PBORs also participated in the event scheduled from 23 Aug – 04 Sep 17. The Naval Band component comprising of 01 officer and 09 musician sailors was led by Commander Satish K Champion, Command Musician Officer, Eastern Naval Command. The band undertook number of praiseworthy and enthralling musical performances during the event.
69. ‘Dilli’ Seminar. The Fourth Edition of the prestigious ‘Dilli’ Seminar at INA was conducted from 12-13 Oct 17. The theme of the seminar was ‘India and Southeast Asia-Maritime Trade, Expeditions and Civilizational Linkages‘. The Dilli series Seminar is conducted once a year with a view to provide a common platform to luminaries and professionals in the field to share their knowledge and wisdom with officers, faculty members and cadets of INA.
70. Deputation of Indian Navy Mobile Training Teams(INMTT). To address the growing training load of international training,one of the important measure being undertaken is the conduct of customised training courses overseas to meet country-specific requirements. The customised training courses are undertaken by specially constituted Mobile Training Teams. So far, IN has deputed IN MTTs to Oman, Myanmar, Kenya, Vietnam, Mauritius, Bangladesh and Nigeria. Requests from certain other FFCs are under consideration. It will not only reduce burden on our own training infrastructure but also effectively increase our training footprint across the world. The courses conducted abroad in 2017 to date are highlighted below:
(a) Training of MNDF.An officer and four MARCOS were deputed to Maldives for conduct of Asymmetric warfare training for MNDF Marines from 27 Mar-19 Apr 17.
(b) Diving Refresher Course. Personnel from Diving School were deputed for training MNDF personnel from March 26 – April 13, 2017.
(c) Short Term Training Team (STTT) To Oman. ‘Training Management’ Course for the Officers and ‘Training Technology’ Course for the Sailors was conducted from 27 Feb – 25 Mar 17.
(d) IN Mobile Training Team – Myanmar (06 Mar – 26 May 17).A Mobile Training Team comprising of three officers was deputed to Myanmar for three months to commence the Basic Submarine Familiarisation Training for trainees of the 1st Basic Submarine Course for Myanmar Navy. The training was imparted to 60 officers and sailors in two batches of 30 each.
Diving Assistance to Civil Authorities
71. Diving Assistance for Rescue Ops. Assistance was provided to Goa State Authority for removal of submerged remains of collapsed foot bridge on 18 May – 19 May 17. One dead body was also recovered by naval divers.
72. Diving Operations to Recover Drowned Body of Foreign Tourist. Diving assistance was provided to Goa State Government on 24 Sep 17 for recovery of mortal remains of a 29 year old Afghanistan national who had reportedly drowned at Sanquelim, Goa.
73. HADR Exercise. Based on the directives of Hon’ble PM during the CCC – 2016, a multi-agency HADR exercise has been coordinated by the Indian Navy on an annual basis. In 2017, two each observers from Sri Lanka, Maldives, Bangladesh and Myanmar were invited.
74. Rescue of Crew Members of Tugboat Sonika. On 17 Apr 17, IN Seaking helicopter, with divers onboard, successfully recovered four crew members of tugboat Sonika, which ran aground on the rocks in the waters off Raj Bhavan, Mumbai. The rescued crew members were provided necessary medical check-up and were found to be in good health.
75. Relief Operations in Gujarat. Gujarat received incessant and torrential rains commencing night of 14/15 Jul 17 which led to flood like situation leading to breakdown of road-connectivity, communications and electric supplies. To provide flood relief assistance, INbase Valsura immediately deployed two teams of divers and lifeguards in the district of Jamnagar, Dhrol and Morbi. The relief and rescue effort was augmented by nine Diving teams (Ex – Mumbai) which were deployed in the affected areas of Ahmedabad, Porbandar, BanasKantha, Patan, Deesa, Gochnad, Baragpur and Santhalpur from 26 Jul – 02 Aug 17. The teams successfully evacuated more than 600 villagers from these affected areas. IN Seaking helicopter (Ex Mumbai) which was operating from Ahmedabad airport undertook Search and Rescue operations, and recce along the Banas river to assess the extent of damage from 26 Jul – 01 Aug 17. In addition, IN ships Gomati and Kochi were deployed with HADR bricks to Porbandar. Ships provided about 250 bricks/packages towards relief ops.
76. Mumbai Flood Relief Operations. Mumbai received incessant and torrential rains on 29 Aug 17 which led to flood like situation leading to breakdown of road-connectivity, communications and electric supplies. A Crisis Management team under Flag Officer Maharashtra Area (Area Commander) assembled on 29 Aug 17 to assess the situation. Areas were allocated to various units with the instructions for distribution of food, medical aid (as required) and provision for night shelters (at Colaba, Ghatkopar, Malad and Worli) for the stranded individuals. Publicity on electronic and social media was undertaken regarding the shelters, including locations and phone numbers, so that stranded individuals could be guided to the shelters. Additionally, seven diving teams, nine rescue teams, one Seaking 42C helicopter and one ship (with relief material and helicopter) were kept standby to provide relief assistance, if required. An aerial recce of the affected low lying areas was also undertaken on AM 30 Aug 17 to determine the extent of flooding with a view to augment relief efforts.
77. Flood Relief at J&K. Two teams of Marcos were deployed for flood relief cum rescue operation in Behrampur and Ningli respectively in Apr 17. The team was able to rescue 25 women and children stranded in flooded houses and provide relief with respect to ration and supplies in conjunction with 22 RR and at the same time maintaining the safety of own personnel and equipment. The efforts of the team were greatly appreciated by the locals.
International Level Sports Championships
78. ISSF World Cup Shooting Competition. The following shooters represented the country in the event scheduled from 23 Feb – 04 Mar 17 at New Delhi:
|(a)||Omkar Singh||MCPO I (QA)||133386-A||10 M Air Pistol|
50 M Free Pistol (b)Rahul Poonia CPO LOG (F & A) 404386-K 50 M Prone
79. Mix Fencing Championship. The under mentioned fencers of Navy Fencing team represented the country during the championship held from 17 – 19 Feb 17 at Kuwait:
|(a)||Satish Garnaik||PO COM (TEL)||235337-H|
|(b)||Vishal Thapar||NA (AH) II||244206-R|
80. 2ndIndo Bhutan Shooting Championship (Big Bore). Following shooters represented country during the above championship held from 06 – 13 Apr 17 at Kadarpur, Haryana:
|(a)||Rahul Poonia, CPO LOG (F&A), 134588-H||300 M|
Three Position Gold (Individual) Gold (Team) with new record 300 M Prone Silver (Individual)
Gold (Team) 300M Three Position Standing Silver (Individual) Silver (Team)
81. 11thISCH International Shooting Championship. Pratik Borse, SSR/UT, No. N-10391 represented country in championship held from 05 – 15 May 17 at Hannover, Germany and won Bronze Medal in 10M Air Rifle events.
82. 7th Senior Asian Artistic Gymnastics Championship. The following members of Navy Gymnastics team represented the country in the championship held from 16-21 May 17 at Bangkok (Thailand):
|Rakesh Patra||CPO PT||219218-B||Player|
|Abhijeet Kumar||Ag PO PT||N-10383||Player|
|Arik Dey||Ag PO PT||N-10365||Player|
|AK Samantray||MCPO II (PT)||177157-F||Coach|
83. ISSF World Cup. Omkar Singh, MCPO I (GW), 133386-A represented the country in ISSF World Cup held from 06-14 Jun 17 at Gabala, Azerbaijan.
84. Jr Asian Wrestling Championship. The following wrestlers represented the country in the championship held from 15-18 Jun 17 at Taichung, Chinese Taipei:
|Praveen Kumar||STD II||404970-N|
85. 2017 Asian Junior Wrestling Championship. The following members of the Navy Wrestling team represented the country in above championship held from 15 – 18 Jun 17 at Taichung, Chinese Taipei.
|(b)||Praveen Kumar||LOG STD II||404970-N||Player|
|(c)||Pushpendra Singh||UT(SSR)||N10416||Bronze Medal|
86. XXVII International “G Kosanov Memorial”. The following members of the Naval Athletics team represented the country in the competition held from 23–26 Jun 17 at Almaty, Kazakhstan:
|(a)||Tajender Pal Singh Toor||Ag PO (PT)||195225-W||Gold Medal|
|(b)||Bibu Mathew||MCPO II (PT)||136297-T||Coach|
National Level Championships
87. 65th Senior National Kayaking / Canoeing Championship. Indian Navy Kayaking / Canoeing Team participated in the 65th Senior National Kayaking/ Canoeing Championship held from 09 – 13 Jan 17 at Indore and won medals as follows:
|(a)||A Ching Ching Singh||CPOPT||195220-H||K4 1000 M||Gold Medal|
|(c)||L Naocha Singh||HII||404390-W||K2 500 M||Gold Medal|
|K2 200 M||Gold Medal|
|K4 200 M||Gold Medal|
|(d)||Mohit Gahlawat||EMAR I||223138-H||C4 200 M||Gold Medal|
|(e)||Siva Sankar TB||Ag PO LOG (SC)||403860-R|
|(f)||M Charan Singh||H II||404113-R||C4 500 M||Gold Medal|
88. Naval Mt Everest Mission – “Sagartal se Sagarmatha 2017”. Naval Mt Everest mission ‘Sagartal se Sagarmatha’ was flagged off by the Chief of the Naval Staff on 23 Mar 17. The team comprising of 18 climbing members and 06 Everest Base Camp (EBC) members commenced their expedition on 04 Apr 17 by undertaking a 16 days trek from Jiri (near Kathmandu), to the Everest Base Camp, thus gaining height gradually and acclimatizing in the process. The team could place the Naval Ensign on top of Mt Everest at 8848 mts on 21 May 17 and 27 May 17 and Mt Lhotse, its sister peak at 8516 mts, on 25 and 27 May 17. The team has performed well with eleven members having summited the two peaks on the 21st, 25th and 27thMay 2017.