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Top Navy commander reviews combat readiness of fleet under Western Naval Command

MUMBAI (PTI):  Vice Admiral Ajendra Bahadur Singh, Western Naval Commander of the Indian Navy, has reviewed the combat readiness of the fleet under his command from October 11-13 which included extensive weapon and integration drills, according to a statement.

Over 20 Indian Navy warships including aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, six submarines and a variety of aircraft participated in the exercise.

Vice Admiral Ajendra Bahadur Singh, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Naval Command, embarked ships of Western Fleet off the west coast of India from October 11 to 13 October to review operational/ combat readiness of the Fleet in a multi-threat scenario," said the defence release on Friday.

Among its other responsibilities, the Western Naval Command guards the country's maritime boundary adjoining Pakistan.

During the high-tempo operations, the Commander-in-Chief also witnessed anti-air, anti-surface and anti-submarine engagements, multi-ship underway replenishments, Boarding Operations/VBSS, under rigorous operational situations.

The ability of the Western Fleet to monitor the entire Area of Responsibility (AoR) of the WNC through network-centric capabilities was also proven effectively, the release said.

The anti-submarine operations included deployment of active and passive arrays for detection of submarines by ships, anti-submarine warfare P8I aircraft and ship-borne helicopters which culminated in torpedo firing.

The exercise also demonstrated the operational capability and readiness of the largest air station of the Indian Navy, INS Hansa, to undertake 24x7 operations in support of the Fleet. Maritime Patrol Aircraft P8I, Dornier and IL-38, HALE UAV Sea-Guardian, Integral helicopters Sea King, Kamov 31, ALH and Chetak, and fighter aircraft MiG 29 K of the Indian Navy and SU 30 of the Indian Air Force contributed effectively towards surveillance and combat operations, it added.

The missile, torpedo and gun firings by ships were against high speed air /surface/ subsurface targets in a realistic tactical scenario to establish the area and point defence capabilities of the Navy.

In addition submarines undertook torpedo firings. The pinpoint accuracy, seamless and safe execution of these firings showcased the lethality and effectiveness of Indian Navy's arsenal and weapon systems, reflecting a high standard of combat readiness, the release said.

Singh complimented the Western Fleet, INS Hansa and maritime element of the Indian Air Force for the readiness to accomplish the concept of operations as envisaged by the Indian Navy, it added.

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