Addressing the media on the eve of Navy Week 2023, the Western Naval Command Chief (CNC) Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi reiterated on board naval warship INS Chennai of preparedness to face challenges from the sea to protect the national maritime assets.
“Indian Navy is proud to have commissioned made in India 21 warships and five submarines in last nine years all constructed in Indian shipyards. We have also concluded 12 shipbuilding contracts worth Rs 1.15 crore with 65 ships and submarines under constructions in Indian shipyards,” said the western naval command chief vice admiral Tripathi.
Western Naval Command Is "Mission Deployed and Combat Ready": Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi
He stressed that Western Naval Command was “Mission Deployed and Combat Ready” to counter threats to Indian maritime security.
“Indian Navy is pivotal in ensuring the security of vital sea lanes critical to Indian and global economy,” stressed Vice Admiral Tripathi.
He shared the emerging new threats from maritime terrorism manifesting into new challenges for combating piracy and narco smuggling in the high seas. “We are monitoring trends and patterns of threats from non state factors impacting our maritime domain being played out daily and testing limits. India Navy is ready and equipped to deter any military adventurism from the sea and also intervention into our internal affairs and subversion of our national interests,” said the western naval command chief.
He further added that the Indian Navy was focused on combat readiness with “near continuous presence” and “mission-based deployments” for operations and extensive surveillance of national maritime assets.
“Maritime terrorism, piracy, robbery, illegal and unregulated fishing in Indian waters, human, weapons and drug trafficking is on the rise and needs fresh paradigm for maritime security. The higher instances of natural disasters and regional instabilities have necessitated increased deployment of Indian Navy for Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Reaponse operations and Non Combatant Evacuation Operations,” explained Admiral Tripathi.
Navy's Successful Operations
The Western Naval Command conducted several successful operations including Operation Kaveri to evacuate 1489 Indians stranded in conflict torn Sudan in April followed by interception and seizure of the 2525 kg narcotics valued at Ra 25,000 crore in May from vessel in the West Arabian Sea and Op Vijay to evacuate Indiana from West Asia.
Indian Navy participated in tri services theatre level operational exercise TROPEX with participation of Indian Coast Gaurd for the first time. Western Naval Command also hosted the tri services commanders conference and the annual Joint Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Exercises Chakravat conducted at Goa in coordination with National Disaster Relief Force. Western Command also participated in tri service exercise Tri Shakti Prahaar.
Admiral Tripathi also stressed on diplomatic engagement with foreign navies to foster cooperation and foreign policy objectives for Indian security. India held several military exercises with friendly nations including two editions of Varuna (France), AUSIDEX (Australia), Malabar (US, Australia, Japan) and other maritime partnership exercises with countries as far as the West Coast of Africa.
India submarine maiden deployment in the Australian continent, regular port of calls at foreign ports and and joint exercises were some of the highlights of the Western Naval Command.
Indian Navy has began an outreach with coastal communities of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa and Karnataka with extensive community interaction programs engaging local fisher folks covering 102 villages on the western coast.