Monday, February 29, 2016

Indo-Seychelles Joint Army Training 'Ex Lamitye' concludes

Exercise ‘Lamitye – 2016’, seventh in the series of Indo-Seychelles Joint Training Exercises, was conducted from 15 to 28 February 2016 at Victoria, Mahe Island, Seychelles with an aim to improve interoperability between both Armies in jointly fighting Counter Insurgency / Counter Terrorism. The Indian contingent comprised of an infantry platoon and representatives from the Special Forces. The Seychelles People’s Defence Forces (SPDF) was represented by the Tazar (Special Forces Unit) and Seychelles Infantry. A total of 52 personnel from the SPDF took part in the exercise, including 20 Tazar (Special Forces Unit) personnel. ‘Exercise Lamitye’ meaning ‘Friendship in Creole’ has been a bridge between the Armed Forces of India and SPDF since 2001. Focused on interoperability in drills pertaining to Counter Insurgency & Counter Terrorism, a number of activities and exercises were conducted during the joint training. 

‘Exercise Sea Hunt’, was an apt culmination , wherein Cordon & Search operations were enmeshed with hostage rescue operations in an Anti-Piracy setting at Cape Ternay, with realistic orchestration of events extending over two days in an urban insurgency environment. 

Brigadier Leopold Payet, Chief of Seychelles Defence Forces, H.E. Mr. Sanjay Panda, High Commissioner of India to Seychelles, Lieutenant Colonel Gudur, Military Attache, High Commission of India to Seychelles and Observer Delegation from Indian Army consisting of senior officers were present during the closing ceremony held on 29 February 2016. Senior military Commanders after a detailed briefing and interaction with troops expressed their satisfaction on the level of synergy and interoperability achieved between the two contingents. 

The officers and soldiers of SPDF were highly appreciative of the high standards of training and operational capability of the Indian Army. The joint training was an ideal platform for fostering jointmanship and interoperability between the defence forces of both the countries. 


Vice Admiral HCS Bisht taking over as Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command


Vice Admiral HCS Bisht, AVSM took over as the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command from Vice Admiral Satish Soni, PVSM, AVSM, NM, ADC at an impressive Ceremonial Parade held at the Naval Base on 29 February 2016.  Admiral Bisht inspected the Ceremonial Guard and reviewed platoons of naval personnel drawn from various ships and establishments of the Eastern Naval Command.

Vice Admiral Satish Soni will be retiring from the Naval Service today on completion of forty years of illustrious career. He was accorded a farewell by the Eastern Naval Command by the traditional ‘Pulling Out’ Ceremony, wherein he was ceremonially pulled out in a jeep by Flag Officers and Commanding Officers of Ships and Naval establishments, to resounding ‘Teen Jais’  from the men to the outgoing Commander-in-Chief.

Commissioned on 01 July 1979, Vice Admiral Bisht is an alumnus of Sainik School (Ghorakhal, Nainital), the National Defence Academy (Pune), Royal Naval Staff College (Greenwich, UK), College of Naval Warfare (Mumbai) and the National Defence College (New Delhi). In the course of his distinguished career, the Flag Officer has held various operational, staff/training and command appointments.

Vice Admiral Bisht's important afloat appointments include Executive Officer of the ASW Corvette INS Ajay, Commander Work Up in the Indian Naval Work Up Team (INWT) at Kochi, Fleet Gunnery Officer of the Eastern Fleet at Visakhapatnam, commissioning Commanding Officer of the Missile Corvette INS Kora and Command of the stealth frigate, INS Tabar

Amongst his other important Training/ Staff appointments, the Flag Officer has been the Training Commander, Naval Gunnery School, INS Dronacharya at Kochi; Director, Naval Intelligence at Naval Headquarters and has also served as Defence Attaché at the High Commission of India, Singapore.  

On promotion to Flag rank on 28 January 2008, the Admiral has served as Assistant Controller of Carrier Projects at Naval Headquarters, Chief of Staff, Southern Naval Command; Flag Officer Sea Training at Kochi, Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet, at Visakhapatnam and Asst Chief of Personnel (HRD) at Naval Headquarters.  On promotion to the rank of Vice Admiral on 01 September 2012, the Flag Officer held appointments as the Controller Personnel Services (CPS) at Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy) and as Director General of Indian Coast Guard (DGICG).


Vice Admiral Bimal Verma took over as Commander-in-Chief of Andaman &Nicobar Command (CINCAN) today.

Vice Admiral Bimal Verma AVSM took over as the 13th Commander-in-Chief of the Andaman & Nicobar Command (CINCAN) on 29 Feb 16, succeeding Vice Admiral Pradeep Kumar Chatterjee PVSM, AVSM, NM, ADC who retired after 39 years of illustrious service today.

Vice Admiral Bimal Verma is an alumnus of the prestigious Rashtriya Indian Military College (RIMC) and National Defence Academy where he was adjudged the best Naval Cadet. He was commissioned in the Indian Navy on 01 Jan 1980 and specialised in ‘Communication and Electronic Warfare’. In the course of his distinguished career, the Flag Officer has held numerous important Command, Staff and Operational appointments.

Vice Admiral Verma’s noteworthy afloat appointments include commissioning crew of INS Viraat, Signal Communication Officer of INS Ganga and Fleet Communication Officer of Western Fleet. He has also been the Commanding Officer of amphibious platforms such as INS Shardul and Magar, missile destroyer INS Ranjit and guided missile destroyer INS Mysore.

Amongst his important ashore appointments, the Flag Officer has been the Principal Director Naval Operations at Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy), Naval Attache in Tehran, Captain Local Work-up team (LWT) at Visakhapatnam, INTEG (Indian Naval Tactical Evolution Group) and has also served with the Signal Intelligence Organisation.

On elevation to the Flag rank, Vice Admiral Verma has held appointments as Flag Officer Doctrines & Concepts, Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area, Assistant Chief of Naval Staff (Information Warfare & Operations) and Flag Officer ‘Alternative Operational Base’ project. On promotion to the rank of Vice Admiral on 01 November 12, the Flag Officer was appointed as the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command where he also coordinated the recently concluded International Fleet Review 2016.

For his distinguished services, Vice Admiral Bimal Verma has been awarded the Ati Vishisht Seva Medal.

Vice Admiral Bimal Verma is married to Mrs. Seema Verma and they have two daughters.


 Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain takes over as Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command

Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain, AVSM, VSM took over as the Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command from Vice Admiral Bimal Verma on 27 February 2016. In the course of his distinguished career, Vice Admiral Jain has held various Operational, Staff and Command Appointments.

Vice Admiral Jain is an alumnus of the Sainik School (Rewa), National Defence Academy (Pune), the Defence Services Staff College (Wellington, Ooty), the College of Naval Warfare (Mumbai) and the National Defence College (Pretoria, South Africa). He was commissioned in the Indian Navy on 01 July 1982 and post specialisation in Gunnery and Missile Warfare, he held appointments as Gunnery Officer of missile destroyers, IN Ships Ranvijay and Ranvir.

The Flag Officer’s noteworthy afloat appointments include command of missile corvettes Nirghat, Khukri, missile destroyer INS Rajput and indigenously built stealth destroyer INS Mysore. He was also the commissioning Executive Officer of INS Brahmaputra and the Fleet Operations Officer of the Eastern Fleet at Visakhapatnam.

Amongst his important ashore appointments, Vice Admiral Jain has been the Director Naval Intelligence (Protocol), Director Foreign Liaison and Principal Director Staff Requirement at Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy).

2 On elevation to the Flag Rank on 03 October 2011, he was appointed as the first Flag Officer Commanding Karnataka Naval Area, Karwar. Thereafter, the Flag Officer took over command of the prestigious Eastern Fleet and also served as Chief of Staff, Southern Naval Command. On promotion to the rank of Vice Admiral on 01 April 15, he was holding the appointment of the Controller Personnel Services at Integrated Headquarters, Ministry of Defence (Navy) prior to taking over as the Chief of Staff, ENC.

For his distinguished service, the Flag Officer was awarded Vishisht Seva Medal in 2009 and Ati Vishisht Seva Medal in 2015.

Indian Coast Guard Gets New Director General


DG Rajendra Singh PTM, TM today took over the charge of the Indian  Coast Guard (ICG) as the 22nd Director General of the service. He is the first regular Coast Guard officer to have been elevated to the rank of the Director General. He succeeds Vice Admiral HCS Bisht, AVSM, who is proceeding on transfer to Vishakhapatnam as the Commander-in- Chief of the Eastern Naval Command, after a distinguished tenure of 13 months as (DGICG) Director General Indian Coast Guard.

Hailing from Uttarakhand, the flag officer is an alumni of the Garhwal University, Dehradun. He joined the ICG on 29 Dec 1980 as an Assistant Commandant in the General Duty cadre. In his distinguished career spanning over three and half decades, the officer has had an impeccable track record and also held various key operational and staff appointments. He has a rare distinction to his credit for successfully commanding of all classes of ICG ships. As Inspector General he has commanded the Eastern and Western region which implied the command of more than 2/3rd of the operational fleet and support units of the service. 

The officer is a Maritime Search And Rescue specialist and has undergone  training with the United States Coast Guard in the US. He has also successfully completed the reputed National Security Course from the Lal Bahadur Shastri Academy, Mussoorie. He is also a recipient of the coveted Tatrakshak Medal for gallantry in 1990 and the President Tatrakshak Medal for Distinguished service in 2007.Director General Rajendra Singh is married to Mrs Urmila Singh and has two daughters.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Russian Skiiers Rescued By Army At Gulmarg


A 33 years old foreign national, Mr Dimitry Lobanov of Russia, was rescued by team from the High Altitude Warfare School (HAWS) of the Indian Army in the upper reaches of Apharwat in Gulmarg area of Jammu & Kashmir. Mr Dimitry Lobanov, who was part of a group of six foreign nationals from Russia was skiing with his group in the higher reaches on Apharwat, where he lost control and fell in a deep gorge covered with snow.

The skiier had suffered severe injuries, resulting in multiple fractures due to the fall. The distress call from the group was immediately responded by a team from HAWS.

The team from HAWS immediately reached the accident site and immediately rescued the individual from a deep gorge and provided first Aid and support. Then, they quickly evacuated him using stretcher, from Apharwat via Khilanmarg to the Army Medical Inspection Room at Gulmarg. The rescue team had to wade through thick snow cover for six kilometers to reach the medical post where the individual was resuscitated and his medical condition stabilized by Army Doctors.

Timely recovery, rescue and evacuation of foreign national by the Indian Army saved his life.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Trainers Of ASEAN Plus Nations Arrive For Multinational Military Exercise At Pune

Exercise FORCE 18, largest ‘Multinational Field Training Exercise (FTX)’ is being conducted by the Indian Army from 02-08 March 2016 at Pune. The theme of the exercise is Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA) and Peacekeeping Operations (PKO). The maiden multinational exercise ever conducted by ground force on Indian soil will see participation of 18 ASEAN Plus nations including China, USA, Russia, Japan, South Korea. 

The essence of the exercise would be to learn and share the best practices with the other Armies of the world and display our commitment for peace and stability in the region. 

As a testimony to the team spirit and achieving of global jointmanship, a unique feature has been embedded in the execution of Exercise Force 18, that is, to train the foreign trainers of the ASEAN Plus countries for one week before the commencement of actual exercise. In this regard, over 25 foreign trainers arrived in Pune on 23 Feb 2016. These trainers who have experience in the field of HMA and PKO would be trained by the Indian Army from 24 Feb till 01 Mar 2016. The training of trainers would facilitate bringing all foreign trainers on an optimum threshold level, conversion of training material into native language and understand the conduct of actual FTX. The trainers would thus form a dynamic role to cater for the challenges caused by language barriers and formulate common operating procedures for various activities to be conducted during the main FTX. 

On 24 Feb 2016, soon after their arrival, the foreign trainers were welcomed and briefed by Brigadier Alok Chandra, Commander of Shivneri Infantry Brigade. The trainers were later oriented to all the training and administrative infrastructure created for the mega exercise. 

This step by Indian Army would further strengthen the motto of ASEAN “ONE VISION, ONE IDENTITY AND ONE COMMUNITY”. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

DAC Clears High Mobility Vehicles For Army

US-2i not taken up. No discussion on approval of AoN of US-2i.

DAC chaired by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar reviewed the pending deals in the past two years from June 2014 till Feb 2016. Basically it was a review meeting. It was found all deals in the period mentioned above have matured.


LoA given for Mine Counter Measure Vessel for the Indian Navy, to be given to Goa Shipyard on nomination basis.


Approval given for procurement for 619 high mobility vehicles for the Indian Army worth 457 crores.

Bravehearts Laid To Rest With Full Military Honours


Srinagar, BB Cantt.   Army today paid a befitting tribute with full military honours to its valiant martyrs Captain Tushar Mahajan and Lance Naik Om Parkash who attained martyrdom yesterday during an operation in Pampore which broke out on 21 Feb 2016 and is still underway.

Homage was paid to the valour and sacrifice of the Martyrs in a solemn ceremony held at Badami Bagh Cantonment. Late Captain Tushar Mahajan and Lance Naik Om Prakash were members of the team that had launched an operation on 21 Feb 2016, against the terrorists who ambushed CRPF personnel and took refuge in the JKEDI Building Pampore, South Kashmir and were instrumental in clearing major portion of the multi storeyed building where the terrorists had hidden. In this process, they engaged the terrorists at close quarters and in the ensuing firefight, suffered grievous injuries to which they later succumbed.

Born to a family of educationists from Udhampur, Captain Tushar Mahajan is proudly remembered by his peers for his indomitable spirit and a very high camaraderie quotient.  Commissioned at the young age of 21 years in 2010, passion for adventure of this son of the soil led him to join the elite Special Forces where ‘Balidaan’ is the motto they live and serve by.  He was an expert combat deep sea diver trained for special operations. The martyr is survived by his parents and a younger brother who is pursuing his education abroad.

The 32 years old Lance Naik Om Prakash was a seasoned commando with 13 years of operational experience.  He had been wounded earlier in 2005 when he had saved a comrade during a counter terrorist operation.  Later, again for his gallantry in similar operations, he was awarded with the "Asadharan Suraksha Seva Praman Patra" by the Prime Minister of India on 15 Aug 2013.  Late Lance Naik Om Prakash, hailed from Shimla, Himachal Pradesh and is survived by his parents, wife and two 7 and 3 years old daughters.

Paying homage to the martyrs on behalf of the entire Chinar Corps fraternity, Lt Gen Satish Dua, Chinar Corps Commander said that the Army and nation salute their sacrifice and that their sacrifice would not go in vain.  He saluted their bereaved families and offering his condolences for their loss, he reinforced Army’s commitment towards their honour and wellbeing.


Conglomerate of  militant organizations United Jihad Council Monday declared that it will confer bravery award ‘Hilal-eShujhat’ -to the three militants who were killed after a 48 hour long gun battle with Indian troopers in South Kashmir’s Pampore town.Spokesperson UJC Syed Sadaqat Hussain told CNS over phone from Muzafarabad that organization Chief Syed Salahuddin convened a special meeting to offer glorious tribute to the three slain militants.He said that Syed Salahuddin while lauding the role and boldness of these militants said that India should read clear writing on the wall.He said all the three militants fought valiantly.The attacks on the Indian forces will be intensified and our militants will continue to target Indian establishments,” he said.We thank people of Jammu and Kashmir especially the people of Pampore for expressing solidarity and standing by them (militants) during the gun fight with Indian troopers,” he said. jknn

Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha's Visit to Bangladesh


Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC)  and Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) is on an official visit to Bangladesh from 21 Feb to 25 Feb 16. The visit is intended to take the existing defence cooperation between the Armed Forces of two countries to the next level.  The areas of cooperation presently include an exchange in Military Training courses, exchange visits and joint sporting activities.
During his stay in Bangladesh, the Chief of the Air Staff is scheduled to hold bilateral discussions with the three Service Chiefs of the Bangladesh Armed Forces at Dhaka.  He will also ‘call-on’ the President and the Prime Minister of the Bangladesh. The main focus of the visit will be on improving bilateral relations, promote Defence ties, and outline further areas of defence co-operation between the two countries.  The CAS will also visit the Air Bases at  Jessore, Bashar & Chittagong, the National Defence College, Military Institute of Science and Technology (MIST) at Mirpur and Bangladesh Army Headquarters.

 During his visit to the Military Institute of Science and Technology, Air Chief Marshal Raha shall be presenting several Training Aids relating to aircraft systems, as a goodwill gesture. The Air Chief’s visit would provide further impetus towards increasing defence cooperation between the two Air Forces and pave the way for greater interaction in the future.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Chief Of Naval Staff Hosts Reception For Naval Veterans



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Admiral RK Dhowan, PVSM, AVSM, YSM, ADC, Chief of the Naval Staff hosted a reception this afternoon 21 Feb 16 (Sunday) at the Naval Officers’ Mess, Varuna for the naval veterans residing in and around Delhi NCR. Admiral and Mrs. Minu Dhowan interacted with the retired naval officers and their spouses. 

Being an important activity of the Navy Week celebrations every year, the event affords an excellent opportunity for interaction between the serving and the retired naval fraternity. Over the years this event has provided a platform that facilitates not only exchange of ideas but also helps in obtaining feedback on the various initiatives implemented by the service for its retired community. 

The gathering comprising those in uniform and those who have re-attired into different outfits post retirement from active-service, represented a vast pool of knowledge, experience and wisdom that is collectively leveraged for the benefit of the Navy in particular and for the country at large. The event was well attended by retired officers comprising largely from those residing in Delhi and the NCR. In addition, senior serving officers in station were also present. 

During the event, CNS apprised the veterans on the various naval activities including the recently conducted mega event ‘International Fleet Review’ at Visakhapatnam, future plans of the Navy and other initiatives taken towards developing various facilities in the NCR for the serving and retired naval fraternity. In addition, the veterans also got an opportunity to interact with the professional teams {from IHQ MoD (Navy)} on issues related to pension, welfare and medical facilities etc. 

The event also witnessed the release of ‘Quarterdeck’ – an annual magazine published by the Navy Foundation. The magazine has over the years established itself as a conduit between the veterans and the serving communities and Senriches with the memoirs of our veterans. It facilitates a virtual walk down the memory lane. 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Coast Guard Joint Operation With Coastal Security Police Identified Sightings Of Unidentified Boat Off Kerala Coast

The Indian Coast Guard at Kochi has carried out sea/air coordinated search off Kerala coast on receipt of information regarding presence of unknown vessel in area.  On 20 Feb 16, a telephonic message was received through coastal police station, Thottappally regarding a fisherman having reported that a white coloured unlit boat approached his fishing boat at 2215 hrs and sought assistance to reach ashore. On receipt of information the Coast Guard diverted it’s ships in area to carry out effective search to interdict the vessel. Coast Guard Dornier ex-Kochi was tasked for sea/air coordinated search.  CSN network was also utilized effectively for corroboration of information received from the fisherman.  It is worth mentioning that Coastal Police, MEW as well as all other stake holders had deployed their asset.  The fishermen Mr. Sunil of fishing boat (Regn No. 1956R) had played a vital role by timely informing presence of unknown boat and exhibited highest degree of responsibility on his part.  It also proves effectiveness of coastal security mechanism in Kerala. After extensive search and coordination it was revealed that tourist boat named SAWFISH of M/s Nature Ideation Farm and 

Leisure Pvt. Ltd was on voyage from Agatti to Kochi via Kalpeni developed problem in one engine and GPS.  The GPS has given wrong location of Kochi due to malfunctioning resulting in the boat deviating from it’s intended course. The Master of the boat Mr. Makubeel realized that the boat is at wrong position when he did not sight the buoys of Kochi channel and also restricted in it’s movement.  

Therefore, he requested fishermen operating at sea to provide necessary assistance.  Further, on advice of owner regarding position of vessel, the master of SAWFISH approached Kochi with one engine at slow speed and entered Kochi harbour at 1000 hrs on 21 Feb 2016. On investigation it was further revealed that SAWFISH was in Agatti island since 2013 and entered Kochi for repair.  

Once again Coastal Security Mechanism in Kerala Coast has been proved wherein the fishermen are acting as eyes and ears to the stake holders in Coastal security.  The message received from fishermen community was logically investigated and possibility of unknown vessel movement as well as illegal activities were ruled out. The Indian Coast Guard together with all stake holders of coastal security mechanism is geared up to maintain safe and secure coast. 

Indian Coast Guard appreciates the efforts of such fishermen towards coastal security and suitably rewards them at an appropriate occasion during community interaction program conducted by Coast Guard.

R.I.P. Pampore Martyrs






Capt Pawan Kumar , 22 yrs old originally from 7 Dogra battalion converted to 10 Para. He was a Jat from Haryana, and was born on Army Day, which is January 15th.

Only child of Rajbir Singh from Jind, Haryana-Pawan Kumar
"I had one child- I gave him to the Army- To the Nation. No father can be prouder".

Mortal remains of late Capt Pawan Kumar to be transported by air to Jind,Haryana tomorrow,last rites in his village by the Army

Capt Tushar Mahajan, 23 yrs old, of 9 Para SF regiment.- He had six years of service in the army, is from Udhampur J&K.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Defence Ministry Exchanges MoU on Skill Development with SDN Trust


A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was exchanged here today between the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and the Skill Development Network (SDN) Trust for Collaboration on Technical and Program Management Support for the Skill Development programmes of the MoD. The SDN Trust is an initiative of Wadhwani Foundation and is engaged in Skills Development related activities and aims to drive economic growth in India through large-scale initiatives in job creation and skill development. The MoU was exchanged between the Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar and Dr. Romesh Wadhwani, Chairman of the Wadhwani Foundation. Speaking on the occasion the Defence Minister said “skill development is an important aspect of the overall policy of the Government of India”. 

Approximately 60,000 service personnel retire or are released every year at a comparatively young age. Directorate General Resettlement (DGR) assists service personnel (due for retirement/release in one to two years) and Ex- Servicemen (ESM) to acquire additional skills and facilitate their resettlement through a financially viable career serving the civil society. Skill Development would go a long way towards supporting gainful employment of these ESM. 

SDN Trust will provide the programme management support to MOD in its Skill Development initiatives like successful roll out of National Skill Qualification Framework (NSQF) based skill training to ESM, supporting NSQF compliant training programmes through Ordinance Factory Boards (OFBs), Defence Public Sector Units (DPSUs) and introduction of vocational education in schools run by defence forces. 

The goals of this MoU are as follows: 

Overall program management support to the MoD Skill Development for achieving the objectives of the Ministry. 

Integrate e-content in the curriculum of the various training programs to improve the employability of the trainees. 

Train the faculty members in NSQF aligned program, using the e-content, etc. 

Training and development of the key officials or institutional heads within MoD and its affiliates for knowledge and capacity enhancement for skill development and entrepreneurship training. 

Monitoring and evaluation of the overall program implementation to bring quality assurance and impact analysis. 

Promote skill development and job fulfilment in any other areas identified by the parties during the term of this MoU. 

The SDN will help in the programme management of the MoD Skill Development initiative. These are:- 

Coordinate with program stakeholders –MSDE, NSDC, SSCs and other agencies for effective design and implementation of NSQF aligned program. 

Support in industry connect, identifying job-role demand and curriculum alignment. 

Provide required professional advice and inputs for effective implementation of the program. 

Support the State Rajya Sainik Board and Zilla Sainik Boards in the skill development initiatives. 

This collaboration aims to train and provide gainful employment to approximately 3, 00,000 ESM and their families, school students and youth in five years starting from Financial Year 2015-16

The SDN commits to spend on Program Management activities including the Teacher training, e-content, training of ESM, training of other officials, technology platform etc. for leveraging the MoD funding towards Skill and Entrepreneurship Development initiatives and schemes. SDN will provide over 1000 hours of online and e-learning modules. 

The MoU shall remain in force for a period of five years. 

Indo-Nepal Battalion Level Combined Exercise Surya Kiran IX


The Ninth Indo-Nepal Combined Battalion level Military Training Exercise SURYA KIRAN is being conducted at Pithoragarh from 08 February to 21 February 2016 under the aegis of Panchshul Brigade of Central Command. During the exercise, an Infantry battalion each from Indian Army and the Nepalese Army would be training together and sharing their experiences of Counter Terrorism operations and Jungle Warfare in mountain terrain.

The Surya Kiran series of exercises is a bi-annual event which is conducted alternatively in Nepal and India. The aim of this combined training exercise is to enhance inter-operability between the Indian and the Nepalese Army units in Jungle Warfare and Counter Terrorism operations in mountainous terrain. The training will also focus on Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief including medical and aviation support. Both the Armies will stand to benefit mutually from shared experiences.

The combined training, mutual interaction and sharing of experiences between both the countries shall further strengthen the historical military and strategic ties, giving further fillip to the bilateral relations and existing strong bonding between both countries.

India, Brazil & South African Conduct Joint Naval Exercise At Goa - IBSAMAR-V


The fifth edition of exercise IBSAMAR between Brazil, India and South Africa is slated be conducted from 19 – 29 Feb 16 off the West Coast of India, with the Harbour Phase being conducted at Goa. This is the first time that Exercise IBSAMAR is being conducted in Indian waters; all previous editions being held at/off South Africa. The primary aim of this exercise is to increase interoperability amongst the three navies as well as develop common understanding and procedures for maritime security operations.

Naval cooperation between the three countries epitomises the strong long term strategic relationship between the three democracies and vibrant economies. Initiated in 2006, Exercise IBSAMAR is the most visible manifestation of this convergence of democratic values, economic interests and maritime cooperation. The scope and complexity of Exercise IBSAMAR has increased steadily and in its 5th edition in 2016, IBSAMAR has matured into a complex trilateral exercise involving participation of ships, submarine, aircrafts and special forces from Brazil, Indian and South Africa.

The scope of Exercise IBSAMAR –V includes wide-ranging professional interactions during the Harbour Phase and a diverse range of operational activities at sea during the Sea Phase. The thrust of exercises at sea this year would be on Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), Surface firings, Air Defences, Visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS), Flying Operations, Search and Rescue and tactical procedures.

During Exercise IBSAMAR-V, the Indian Navy will be represented by INS Mumbai an indigenous designed and built guided missile destroyer, INS Trishul a stealth frigate and INS Shalki a Shishumar class submarine. In addition, various Fast Attack Craft, Sea Harriers and Mig 29K fighter aircraft, Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft and integral rotary wing helicopters are also scheduled to participate in the trilateral exercise.

The Brazilian Navy would be represented by Brazilian Naval Ship Amazonas, with embarked Special Forces, Commanded by Commander Alessander Felipe Imamura Carneiro. The South African Navy would be represented by South African Naval Ship SAS Spioenkop with integral helicopter and embarked Special Forces, Commanded by Captain MA Boucher. Both the ships are on return passage after participating in the International Fleet Review (IFR) held at Visakhapatnam from 04 – 08 Feb 16. Commencing at IFR, Exercise IBSAMAR V marks an operational chapter to nearly a month-long interaction of these ships with the Indian Navy.

Ex IBSAMAR highlights the maritime dimension of the IBSA Dialogue Forum and the robust South-South cooperation. The current edition is another significant step in strengthening mutual confidence and inter-operability as well as sharing best practices between the Indian, Brazilian and South African Navies. The exercise will also go a long way in enhancing maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region and beyond, for the benefit of the global maritime community.

2nd Indo-US Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Cooperation Concludes

2nd Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Cooperation (JWGACTC) meeting between India & United States concludes in New Delhi 


The 2nd meeting of the Joint Working Group on Aircraft Carrier Technology Co-operation (JWGACTC), constituted under the auspices of the Indo – US Defence Trade and Technology Initiative, was organised in India from 15 to 18 Feb 16. An 11 member delegation of the US Side, headed by Rear Admiral Thomas J Moore, Program Executive Officer, Aircraft Carriers (United States Navy), visited various defence/ industrial installations in India including the Shore Based Test Facility at Goa, Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), Bengaluru and Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL), Kochi. The delegation also visited the first Indian Indigenous Aircraft Carrier being constructed at CSL. 

The concluding session of the Joint Working Group Meeting was held on 18 Feb 16 at New Delhi and was co-chaired by Vice Admiral GS Pabby, Controller Warship Production and Acquisition and Rear Admiral Thomas J Moore, Program Executive Officer, Aircraft Carriers (United States Navy). During this meeting, various aspects of cooperation in the field of aircraft carrier technology were discussed and a joint statement signed. 

The meeting was attended by members of the Joint Working Group and relevant representatives from IHQ MoD (N), HQIDS, DRDO and Ministry of External Affairs, India. 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Indo-Myanmar Coordinated Patrol (IMCOR) & Signing of Standard Operating Procedure (SOP)


As part of the ongoing India-Myanmar defence relations, Navies of the two countries have conducted Coordinated Patrols along the Maritime boundary since 2013. Taking it forward, the Fourth Edition of the India-Myanmar Coordinated Patrol (IMCOR) was successfully undertaken from February 13 to 16, 2016 along the International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) in the Andaman Sea. Indian Navy Ships Saryu and Bitra along with Union of Myanmar Ships Aung Zeya and FAC 563 participated in the 4th IMCOR. Cmde Girish Garg, Naval Component Commander from the Tri-Service HQs in Port Blair was embarked onboard INS Saryu.

During the Closing Ceremony of 4th IMCOR, the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for IMCOR was also signed between Indian Navy and Myanmar Navy. Cmde Atul Anand VSM from Indian Navy and Cmde Aung Zaw Hlaing from Myanmar Navy signed the document in the presence of H.E Gautam Mukhopadhaya, the Ambassador of India to Myanmar. This is only the third country with which India has signed a formal agreement for maritime coordinated patrols and reflects growing naval interaction between India and Myanmar. The signing of the SOP is a significant achievement and will facilitate smooth conduct of coordinated patrols between two friendly neighbours that share a long maritime boundary in the strategically significant Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal. 

Command Hospital (Eastern Command), Kolkata Gets Raksha Mantri’s Trophy For Best Service Hospital



The Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar presented the Raksha Mantri’s Trophy and citation for the Best and Second Best Service Hospital in the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) here today. The trophy for the Best Service Hospital went to Command Hospital (Eastern Command), Kolkata, which was received by its Commandant Major General TS Ahluwalia. The trophy for the Second Best Hospital was presented to INHS Asvini, Mumbai, which was received by its Commandant Surgeon Rear Admiral AA Pawar. 

Speaking on the occasion, the Defence Minister praised the yeoman service being rendered by the AFMS over the years both in war and peace. He complimented all the members of Command Hospital (Eastern Command), Kolkata, INHS Asvini, Mumbai and the entire AFMS for their excellent work in provisioning of contemporary and comprehensive healthcare. 

The Director General AFMS and Senior Colonel Commandant Lt Gen BK Chopra in his opening remarks highlighted the modernisation programme of the Medical Services and reassured that the AFMS is fully prepared to meet any challenge. 

The Raksha Mantri’s Trophy was instituted in 1989 to create a healthy competition among the Command Hospitals of the Army and its equivalent hospitals in the Navy and Air Force. The Best and Second Best Hospital are adjudged on the basis of a number of objective criteria by a Committee headed by Director General Health Services (Armed Forces). The Joint Secretary (O/N), Ministry of Defence is also a member of the Committee. 

The function was attended by all the three Service Chiefs, Defence Secretary and other senior officers from the Services and the Ministry of Defence. 

Passing Out Parade – Indian Coast Guard Law & Ops Course 61st Batch


PASSING OUT PARADE – CG LAW AND OPS COURSE 61ST Batch

17 Feb 16.     24 Assistant Commandants of the 61st Batch passed out of the portals of Indian Coast Guard Training Center on successful completion of CG Law and Operations Course today.  On this occasion, an impressive Passing out Parade (POP) was held at Indian Coast Guard District Headquarters No. 4, Kochi.   This POP marked the successful culmination of the Technical Courses for the trainee officers.  During the 08 weeks CG Law and Operations Course, the officers were imparted instructions on Coast Guard specific subjects such as Maritime Law, Search and Rescue, Fisheries Monitoring & Control, Prevention and Control of Marine Pollution and other subjects related to the CG Charter of Duties. 

The Passing Out Parade was reviewed by Deputy Inspector General Gurupdesh Singh, TM, Principal Director (Manpower Planning & Training), CGHQ. After the ceremonial review, the Flag Officer awarded book prizes to the meritorious trainee officers. Assistant Commandant Varun Raj S was awarded the Book Prize for scoring highest marks in the CG Law and Ops Course.  The coveted “Director General Sword of Honour” for the 60th Batch was awarded to Assistant Commandant Rakesh Kumar Agrawal for standing first in overall order of merit. Speaking on the occasion, DIG Gurupdesh Singh exhorted the officer trainees of the importance of honing the skills they have gained during their training and reiterated the need for setting high standards of professionalism and conduct as becoming of an officer in Indian Coast Guard.  He impressed upon the officers the need to uphold the stature, honour and the glorious tradition of the service at all times and expressed the optimism that this training would form strong bedrock for the professional competence and leadership expected from an officer in the Indian Coast Guard. 

The ceremony culminated with the successful trainee officers marching past the Saluting Dias (known as the Quarterdeck), in Slow March. 

The POP was witnessed by a large number of senior Naval and Coast Guard Officers and families as well as civilian dignitaries.  DIG MV Pathak, Commander District Headquarters No 4 was the conducting officer.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

BAE Systems Down-selects Mahindra For Proposed Ultra Lightweight Howitzer Assembly Integration & Test


New Delhi, India -- Demonstrating its commitment to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to 'Make in India', BAE Systems has down-selected Mahindra as its business partner for the proposed in-country Assembly, Integration & Test (AIT) facility for the M777 Ultra Lightweight Howitzer. India and the United States are in discussions for a Foreign Military Sale (FMS) of 145 M777A2 LW155 howitzers for the Indian Army. BAE Systems looks forward to working with Mahindra in the coming weeks to finalize details of this AIT facility and to negotiate the terms of its contractual arrangement.

In 2015, the Company developed and submitted a US Government-supported proposal offering a higher degree of indigenization on the M777 weapon system. The highlight of this is the commitment to establish AIT capabilities in India in partnership with a domestic Indian company.

The selection follows a detailed assessment of Mahindra’s ability to fulfil the requirements and provide the best value to the M777 India programme, and in the future, grow its capability as a strategic partner for BAE Systems in India.

Dr. Joe Senftle, Vice President & General Manager, Weapon Systems, BAE Systems Inc., “As a founding partner of defence manufacturing in India, BAE Systems is pleased to partner with Mahindra on our offer to develop an Assembly, Integration and Test facility in India. The facility is a fundamental part of the M777 production line.  A domestic Assembly, Integration and Test facility will enable the Indian Army to access maintenance, spares and support for the M777 locally. We will continue to support the two Governments to progress to contract agreement so that we may begin the process of ‘Make in India’ for M777.”

“Mahindra and BAE Systems share the same values and common vision towards ‘Make in India’. BAE Systems is one of the largest defence companies globally and we could not have a better partner. M777 will give our Defence Forces a much needed operational advantage and an access to state of art technology. Mahindra M777 facility will also ensure that the life cycle support is available locally thereby enhancing operational availability of the guns. We look forward to making a major contribution to our Defence Forces and economy of India” said Mr. SP Shukla, Group President, Mahindra Defence & Aerospace, Mahindra Group.

About Mahindra Aerospace and Defence Sector
Mahindra Aerospace has led the Mahindra Group’s foray into utility aircraft and aerostructure manufacturing since 2008. Its utility aircraft business, based in Australia, currently produces the Airvan 8, the most capable, rugged and versatile utility aircraft in its class. Certified in 38 countries, over 200 are in service. Mahindra Aerospace is also developing a 10-seat turboprop, the Airvan 10, which is scheduled for certification in 2015.

Mahindra Defence has companies engaged in catering to needs of all three wings of Defence forces –Army, Airforce and Navy and para military forces. The product range includes armoured vehicles, underwater warfare equipment, simulators, radars and surveillance equipment’s etc.

About Mahindra
The Mahindra Group focuses on enabling people to rise through solutions that power mobility, drive rural prosperity, enhance urban lifestyles and increase business efficiency.

A USD 16.9 billion multinational group based in Mumbai, India, Mahindra provides employment opportunities to over 200,000 people in over 100 countries. Mahindra operates in the key industries that drive economic growth, enjoying a leadership position in tractors, utility vehicles, information technology, financial services and vacation ownership. In addition, Mahindra enjoys a strong presence in the agribusiness, aerospace, components, consulting services, defence, energy, industrial equipment, logistics, real estate, retail, steel, commercial vehicles and two wheeler industries.

In 2015, Mahindra & Mahindra was recognized as the Best Company for CSR in India in a study by the Economic Times. In 2014, Mahindra featured on the Forbes Global 2000, a comprehensive listing of the world’s largest, most powerful public companies, as measured by revenue, profit, assets and market value. The Mahindra Group also received the Financial Times ‘Boldness in Business’ Award in the ‘Emerging Markets’ category in 2013. Visit us at mahindra.com.

Army Chief Presents President’s Colours To Corps Of Signals


General Dalbir Singh, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) presented the “President’s Colours” to the Corps of Signals of Indian Army at Gauri Shankar Parade Ground of 1 Signal Training Centre Jabalpur, on 15th February 2016. Lieutenant General Balwant Singh Negi, Army Commander, Central Command was also present. The Colour Presentation Parade was commanded by Brig Kanwar Vinod Kumar, Commandant, 1 Signal Training Centre. The honour has been bestowed upon the Corps of Signals in due recognition of its meritorious service rendered to the Nation since raising. To commemorate this historic event the Chief of Army Staff also released a “First Day Cover”. 

The COAS reviewed the parade and during his address, appreciated the efforts and advanced technologies being used by the Corps in the field of telecommunications. He also appreciated the high standard of parade conducted at 1 Signal Training Centre. 

It was a historic moment for the Corps of Signals to receive the President’s Colours on the occasion of its 106th Raising Day and 15th Reunion on 15th Feb 2016. Earlier the Corps of Signals had received the Regimental Colours on 20 Feb 1965 and 15 Feb 1981. 


Mortal Remains Of The Remaining Siachen Bravehearts Arrive In Delhi



Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Siachen Miracle Survivor Continues To Be Critical

Medical Bulletin of Lance Naik Hanamanthappa as at 1600 Hrs on 10 Feb 2016 

Braveheart Lance Naik Hanamanthappa was reviewed by the treating team of Army Hospital (R&R) comprising of Critical Care specialists, HoD Dept of Medicine, Senior Nephrologist and the Senior Neurologist and a panel of experts from AIIMS New Delhi. 

The entire team was in agreement with the management that the patient had undergone till now, and concurred with the future plan of management for him. He continues to remain extremely critical with evidence of oxygen deprivation to the brain on CT scan. There is evidence of pneumonia in both lungs. His multi-organ dysfunction state continues unabated. His condition has deteriorated despite aggressive therapy and supportive care. 


Health Bulletin In Respect Of Lance Naik Hanamanthappa Koppad as at 1200h on 10 Feb 16 

Lance Naik Hanamanthappa Koppad of 19 MADRAS continues to battle the odds and his medical condition remains very critical. He remains ventilator dependent since arrival. The medical team treating him at R & R Hospital is monitoring his situation continuously and is treating him with one of the best expertise and resources available in the world. 


As Received From a 19 Madras Officer :

"My unit 1 jco and 9 OR got run over by a massive avalanche in siachen. The jco was the ghatak jco. The nco had just passed his jco cadre. All my coy guys. Despite the pm, Rm and others declaring all dead...the Commanding Officer refused to leave the location till he found his boys. He set up camp at the avalanche site and would not budge even in the face of snow storms and wailing blizzards...the efforts of the Search And Rescue team has paid off...all nine martyrs now found....and L Nk Hanumanthappa is still alive...though his liver and kidneys are failing due to acute dehydration....but the WILL never left him....he knew his brethren would dig up heaven and earth for him only if he held on....cheers to the indomitable infantry spirit...way to go 19 MADRAS....PROUD TO BE FROM THE PALTAN WITH SUCH ETHOS AND SPIRIT.."

Army Technology Board (ATB) Meeting held at College of Military Engineering, Pune


The Eighteenth Meeting of Army Technology Board is being held on 10 & 11 Feb 2016 at College of Military Engineering, Pune under the Chairmanship of Lt Gen PM Hariz, General Officer Commanding in Chief, Army Training Command (ARTRAC).  Army Technology Board provides a platform to leverage the technological expertise of Indian Institutes of Technology and Indian Institutes of Information Technology into useful solutions and products for the Army, in an economical and reasonable time frame.

The board reviewed the progress of 21 ongoing projects and also considered certain new proposals under the enhanced budget ceiling for R&D projects through technical government institutes. The meeting saw increased participation from number of IIsT and IIsIT, which provided greater impetus towards the aim of generating successful research work in support of Army.

Lt Gen PM Hariz, in his address asked the forum to synergize R & D efforts under ATB with Army’s capability development plans and focus on technologies as reflected in technology perspective and capability roadmaps document issued by Ministry of Defence.

The Chairman, ATB highlighted the key emerging technology fields as Battlefield Transparency, Command and Control Systems, Communication Systems, Nanotechnology, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Defence and Smart Antenna System that can be pursued by ATB.

The vision of the ATB envisages meeting immediate requirements of field formations and training institutes with projects that have low gestation period and help to improve efficiency of our troops.


IFR 2016 - Passage Exercise - AU Revoir till we Meet Again

The International Fleet Review 2016, conducted at Visakhapatnam from  04-08 Feb 16, culminated with Indian and foreign Naval ships undertaking a Passage Exercise (PASSEX) in the Bay of Bengal on 09 Feb 16. 54 ships that had participated in IFR-16 sailed out from Visakhapatnam in the first ever Passage Exercise (PASSEX) with combined participation of foreign and Indian warships yesterday.  As per the maritime traditions, visiting foreign ships are generally escorted to the open seas on their way home (on completion of the visit).

The PASSEX was aimed at fostering greater cooperation and camaraderie with friendly foreign navies, increasing interoperability, providing the requisite operational element to IFR as also to mark the culmination of IFR 16, an event that saw the largest scale participation of foreign ships ever in a Fleet Review in India. The exercise witnessed participation by 34 Indian Naval ships and 20 foreign warships from across 14 countries. The US Navy, Peoples Liberation Army (Navy) and the Royal Navy of Oman deployed two ships each for the exercise.

The Passage Exercise was conducted in two groups, centred on Indian Naval aircraft carriers viz.Vikramaditya and Viraat, wherein the ships sailed out in two groups of 27 ships each, with  the first group under the command of Rear Admiral Ravneet Singh NM, Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet, embarked onboard aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya and the second group under the command of Rear Admiral SV Bhokare YSM NM, Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet embarked onboard the aircraft carrier INS Viraat and included manoeuvres and flying operations. A ceremonial steam-past, wherein, Indian and foreign warships sailed past each other in formation, provided an opportunity for participants to bid adieu to fellow seafarers and marked the finale of the exercise. Notably, the flying operations also included landing of a helicopter from Royal Navy ship HMS Defender onboard INS Viraat to commemorate the historic association of the aircraft carrier with the Royal Navy.

The unprecedented scale and scope of the PASSEX are indicative of India’s growing stature in the maritime domain and the bridges that have been painstakingly built by the Indian Navy

OROP Comes Into Effect From Feb 28th


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Lance Naik Hanamanthappa K , 19 Madras - Miracle Survivor Of Siachen Avalanche




Health Bulletin in respect of Lance Naik Hanamanthappa Koppad as on 09 Feb 16 

Health bulletin issued by Army Hospital Research and Referral (R&R) in New Delhi today is contained below. 

“L/Nk Hanamanthappa K of 19 MADRAS, was buried under 35 ft of ice and snow at 20500 ft for five days since the avalanche at Siachen on 03 Feb 16. He was rescued from the site on 08 Feb 16. On recovery, he was found to be conscious but drowsy and disoriented. He was severely dehydrated, hypothermic, hypoxic, hypoglycemic and in shock. He was immediately resuscitated by the doctors at the site, who had been there for the past five days in the hope of a survivor. 

He was treated with warm intravenous fluids, humidified warm oxygen and passive external re warming. He was flown out from the site on 09 Feb 16 by helicopter along with a Medical Specialist to the Siachen base camp, from where he was brought to the Thois air base. He was then transferred to Delhi by a fixed wing aircraft of the IAF along with a Critical Care Specialist of the IAF and Medical Specialist from the Siachen Base Camp. 

He is currently comatose and continues to be in shock with low blood pressure. He has pneumonia and his investigations have revealed liver and kidney dysfunction. Fortunately there was no cold exposure related frost bite or bony injuries to him. He is being treated by a team of intensivists, neurologist, nephrologist, endocrinologist and surgeons. He has been treated with fluids, drugs to bring up his blood pressure and antibiotics. He has been placed on a ventilator to protect his airway and lungs in view of his comatose state. He remains extremely critical and is expected to have a stormy course in the next 24 to 48 hrs due to the complications caused by re warming and establishment of blood flow to the cold parts of the body”. 

General Dalbir Singh, COAS visited Army Hospital Research and Referral (R&R) today and commended the brave heart for his indomitable mental robustness and his refusal to give in to harsh elements of nature. He also conveyed best wishes on behalf of all ranks of the Army for his early and complete recovery. 

President of India applauds the indomitable spirit of Lance Naik Hanumanthappa 

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee has applauded the indomitable spirit of Lance Naik Hanumanthappa who survived in the avalanche on Siachen Glacier of February 3, 2016. 

In his message to General Dalbir Singh, Chief of the Army Staff, the President said, “I am happy to know that Lance Naik Hanumanthappa has survived the avalanche on Siachen Glacier of February 3, 2016. I applaud his indomitable spirit and ability to endure adverse conditions. 

Lance Naik Hanumanthappa’s will power and courage to fight all odds is truly an example to all others. 

I join the people of our country in praying for his early and speedy recovery”. 


PM visits Lance Naik Hanumanthappa in hospital


The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, today visited Siachen avalanche survivor, Lance Naik Hanumanthappa, in hospital. The soldier was airlifted from the glacier and admitted to the Army R&R Hospital in New Delhi earlier today. 

The Prime Minister was briefed on the condition of Lance Naik Hanumanthappa. He spent about ten minutes with the soldier. He met the team of doctors and medical staff attending to Lance Naik Hanumanthappa, and emphasized that no effort should be spared in his treatment. 

"No words are enough to describe the endurance and indomitable spirit of Lance Naik Hanumanthappa. He is an outstanding soldier," the Prime Minister said. 

The Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Dalbir Singh was also present.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Indo-Nepal Battalion Level Combined Military Exercise Surya Kiran IX Commences



The 14 day Indo-Nepal Combined Military Exercise Surya Kiran IX at general area, Pithoragarh commenced on 08 February 2016 and will culminate on 21 February 2016. A combined Ceremonial Parade was held by both the participating contingents. The Nepal Army is being represented by officers and troops of the elite Shree Rudra Dhoj Battalion while an Infantry Battalion is participating on behalf of Indian Army. The Combined Battalion Level Exercise is being conducted under the aegis of Panchshul Brigade of Central Command.

This is the Ninth Indo-Nepal Combined exercise and during the next 14 days of combined training, emphasis would be laid on upgradation of tactical and practical skills by sharing each others experiences and also on enhancing interoperability in Jungle Warfare and Counter Terrorism operations in mountain terrain. The role and importance of Armed Forces in disaster management in both the countries has assumed increasing significance in recent years. Focus will also be laid on Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Relief Operations which also includes medical and aviation aspects.

Brig Sanjay Sharma of Headquarter Central Command was present during the opening ceremony and interacted with the soldiers of both the contingents. In the opening address, he emphasised that both the armies have a lot to learn from each other especially in our approach towards handling the modern day challenges of addressing terrorism and also in disaster management as it has been one of the most important challenges for both countries after the recent calamities. Senior Nepalese Army officials are also likely to attend the combined exercise alongwith their Indian Counterparts during the validation phase of the exercise.

Operational Demo & International City Parade, International Fleet Review-2016


























Photos By Basani Satheesh Kumar, SPO, Secunderabad &Sandesh Rokade, SPO, Mumbai


Text of PM's address at International Fleet Review 2016


Honourable Governor of Andhra Pradesh and Chief Ministers

My Cabinet colleagues;

Delegates of Foreign Navies;

Brave and proud men and women of the Indian Navy; and

The resolute people of this great city- Visakhapatnam.



I am privileged to visit Visakhapatnam. The city has a special place in the heart of all Indians.

My last visit to Vishakhapatnam was in October of 2014.

At that time, Cyclone Hudhud had left the city shattered in pieces.

But, the people of Vishakhapatnam smiled in the face of adversity.

It is a tribute to the city that within 14 months, you have risen against all odds to welcome the Navies from across the continents in this International Fleet Review.

A little over a year ago, we saw the full fury of the ocean. Today, thanks to the spirit of the people of Visakhapatnam, we are discussing how the oceans can be a source of economic prosperity for all of us.

For its courage and resolve, we all salute the city of Visakhapatnam.

My profuse thanks to the men and women of the Indian Navy for their tireless dedication for making this Fleet Review a truly historic success.

My sincere gratitude also to Chief Minister Chandrababu Naiduji for his strong support for this international event.

For me personally, witnessing the harmony among the best of International Navies here has been a rewarding experience.

Just over three months earlier in October, we welcomed in Delhi, for the first time ever, all the 54 African nations, including over 40 Heads of State for the 3rd India-Africa Summit.

A few weeks earlier in August 2015, India had hosted in Jaipur 14 Heads of the State for the Second Forum for India-Pacific Island Cooperation.

Just day before yesterday, we welcomed all the SAARC countries for the 12th South Asian Games in Guwahati.

And today it is our pleasure to welcome 50 foreign Navies from every corner of the globe at India's second International Fleet review- the first one on India's East Coast.

Your participation is a message of cooperation and friendship that we deeply cherish.

On behalf of my countrymen, I thank you all for accepting our invitation and joining in this event with such spirit.

To build on the gains from today's gathering, India would host the first ever Global Maritime Summit in April this year.

Its priority would be to scale up and strengthen the vibrant trade / investment / technology and commercial linkages between India and other maritime nations.

Friends,

The oceans and world’s waterways are global commons. Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam– the concept of whole world as a family – is perhaps most vividly witnessed on the oceans of the planet, that connect us all.

The last time India hosted the International Fleet Review was in the year 2001, in the city of Mumbai.

The world of 2016 is vastly different.

Its politics is turbulent, and its challenges complex.

At the same time, the oceans are the lifelines of global prosperity. They present us with great economic opportunities to build our nations.

Over 90% of global merchandise trade is carried on the oceans.

Over the last 15 years, its value has grown from about 6 trillion dollars to about 20 trillion dollars.

Oceans are critical for the global energy security as over 60% of world’s oil production moves through sea routes.

Our ability to reap economic benefits from the oceans rests on our capacity to respond to the challenges in the maritime domain.

The threat of sea borne terror, of which India has been a direct victim, continues to endanger the regional and global peace and stability.

Piracy too remains a strong challenge.

The threat of natural disasters like tsunamis and cyclones is ever present.

Manmade problems such as oil spills, climate change continue to risk the stability of the maritime domain.

A peaceful and stable maritime environment is, therefore, critical for the regional and global security. It is also a must to harvest the riches of the oceanic ecosystems.

Given the scale and complexity of modern day challenges, the international maritime stability cannot be the preserve of a single nation.

It has to be a shared goal and responsibility of all the seafaring countries.

To this end, the Navies and maritime agencies of the world need to work together, and engineer virtuous cycles of cooperation.

But, where necessary, they also need to act to secure the international sea lanes of communication.

I believe that if oceans were to propel our economies, then we must:

Use seas to build peace, friendship and trust, and curb conflict;

respect and ensure freedom of navigation; and

cooperate, not compete in responding to the challenges in the seas.

The large presence of foreign Navies at this Fleet Review is a confirmation of our shared urge to walk the pathways of peace and cooperation to keep the maritime domain safe and secure.

Friends,

India is, and has always been, a maritime nation.

India's ancient Sanskrit texts also refer to the oceans as the storehouse of Chaturdashanam Ratnanam, the 14 gems.

Surrounded by sea from three sides, India has a long coastline of over 7500 kilometres.

We have been blessed with a rich maritime heritage ever since .Lothal in Gujarat became one of the earliest sea ports of the world.

India’s central location in the Indian Ocean has connected us with other cultures, shaped our maritime trade routes, influenced India’s strategic thought, and defined our maritime character.

Since the days of the Indus Valley Civilization, India has maintained an extensive network of maritime links, including with Africa, Western Asia, the Mediterranean region, the West, South East Asia and the Far East.

We are delighted that the Navies from all these regions have joined in this Fleet Review.

The Photo Essay book on the ‘Maritime Heritage of India’, that I have just released, showcases this glorious maritime tradition.

Friends,

In moderntimes too, the oceans, especially the Indian Ocean, occupy a vital place in India’s national security and economic prosperity.The waters of the Indian Ocean touch the shores of over 40 countries.

About half of world's container traffic; and close to one-third of world's cargo traffic passes through this region.

90% of our trade by volume and 90% of our oil imports are carried on the seas.

India’s 1200 island territories, and our huge Exclusive Economic Zone of 2.4 million square kilometers makes clear the economic significance of the Indian Ocean.

For us, it also serves as a strategic bridge with the nations in our immediate and extended maritime neighbourhood.

In March last year, in Mauritius,I had spelt out our vision for the Indian Ocean.

The Indian Ocean Region is one of my foremost policy priorities. Our approach is evident in our vision of“Sagar”, which means “Ocean” and stands for – Security And Growth for All in the Region.

We would continue to actively pursue and promote our geo-political, strategic and economic interests on the seas, in particular the Indian Ocean.

To this end, India's modern and multi-dimensional Navy leads from the front. It is a force for peace and good.

A network of growing political and economic maritime partnerships, and strengthening of regional frameworksalso helps us pursue our goals.

Friends,

India’s quest for economic prosperity through oceans is a part of our larger efforts to transform India.

We are not just a bright spot in the global economy. Regionally and internationally, we are a pillar of stability and an important growth centre.

India's rise is in harmony with the goal of maintaining the regional and global peace and security.

Within the country, there is great optimism, enthusiasm and a “can do” mindset.

This optimism comes from the energy and enterprise of our confident youth.

It also comes from our bold and sustained measures to transform our country, improve our laws, processes and institutions.

We are launching new initiatives and creating opportunities to empower people, and give them a sense of ownership in nation's progress.

“Make in India”, which has re-ignited our manufacturing sector is one such initiative.

Defence manufacturing and ship building are among its focus areas.

In a week from now, on 13 February, we would hold 7 days of global engagement under "Make in India" in Mumbai.

During this time, the best in the global industry would link up with the innovation, design and manufacturing opportunities of India- the world's fastest growing economy.

We want to invite the world to Make in India, Make for India, and Make for the World.

We take pride in the fact that of all the Indian Naval ships participating in this Fleet Review, at least 37 are“Made in India” – a number that will surely rise in the coming years.

Our “Skill India” program is building institutions that train, support, encourage and guide our 800 million youth on the path of entrepreneurship.

Our skilled youth are ready to respond to the national and global manpower demands of the 21st century.

An important part of India’s transformation is my vision of “Blue Economy” in its widest sense.

The Blue Chakra – or the wheel – in our National Flag, represents the potential of the Blue Economy.

An essential part of this pursuit is the development of India's coastal and island territories: but, not just for tourism.

We want to build new pillars of economic activity in the coastal areas and in linked hinterlands through sustainable tapping of oceanic resources.

Strengthening our marine research, development of eco-friendly, marine industrial and technology base, and fisheries are other elements of our goal.

In this endeavour, I see youth in the coastal areas as our true assets. They have a natural and deep understanding of the Oceans.

They could lead the way in the development of blue economy in India.

In partnership with all the coastal states of India, I want to shape a special program of skilling India's youth in the coastal areas of the country.

Friends,

In the end, let me once again congratulate the Indian Navy for the flawless conduct of this grand event.

For the homeward journey of all our Naval friends from across the world, may you always have fair winds, following seas, and many a fathom below your keel.

Thank You.

Jai Hind!