HomeIndian DefenceIndian Navy to showcase twin carrier operations with Rajnath Singh on board

Indian Navy to showcase twin carrier operations with Rajnath Singh on board

Source : Hindustan Times

New Delhi: Defence minister Rajnath Singh will witness twin carrier operations of the Indian Navy during the top Naval Commanders Conference in March on board INS Vikrant between Kochi and Goa. Indiaโ€™s second aircraft carrier INS Vikrant came out of maintenance refit at Cochin Shipyard on January 26 and is slated to participate in 50 nation Milan exercise in February off the coast of Visakhapatnam.

INS Vikrant and INS Vikramaditya.
INS Vikrant and INS Vikramaditya.

While the Naval Commanders Conference will be held between March 4 and 8 with the second stage in New Delhi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will inaugurate the first MH 60R squadron of multi-role helicopters in Cochin. As many as 24 Sikorsky MH 60 R helicopters were acquired by India from the US on a government-to-government basis.

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It is during his sea trip from Kochi to Goa, Singh will witness the full power of the Indian Navy with aircraft carriers INS Vikramaditya and INS Vikrant showcasing their prowess at sea with fighter operations using MiG-29 K aircraft. INS Vikrant is currently on sea trials and will move to Visakhapatnam after docking at Cochin port for final review.

As many as 24 nations are sending their warships for participation in Milan Exercises on the Indian eastern seaboard. The multi-nation exercises come at a time when the Houthi militia and Somali pirates are playing havoc with commercial shipping in the Red Sea and off the Gulf of Aden. The Iranian-backed Shia Houthis are targeting commercial shipping in the Red Sea to force Israel to suspend its military operations against the Hamas terrorist group in Gaza. The Somali pirates are active in the region in lieu of the multi-million dollar ransom they extract from owners of hijacked ships. While the Indian Navy is playing a yeoman role in defending commercial shipping from pirates and missile attacks in the Arabian Sea, the maritime security in the Indo-Pacific is currently under threat with China and the rapidly expanding PLA Navy playing the hegemon in the South China Sea.

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