India and Russia has began their bilateral naval exercise, Indra Navy, which is aimed at increasing interoperability between the two Navies and developing common understanding of procedures for maritime security operations.
Indra Navy is a bilateral maritime exercise between the Indian and Russian navies and epitomises the strategic relationship between the two countries.
Russian and Indian warships have left the naval base in the city of Visakhapatnam in India’s south-eastern state of Andhra Pradesh, starting the second - active - phase of the 8th joint naval exercise Indra that ends on December 12.
The primary aim of the 8th edition of 'Indra Navy' exercise series is to increase interoperability between the two Navies and develop common unders. The six-day drill commenced off Visakhapatnam in the Bay of Bengal.
A top naval official on Tuesday said the ongoing exercise between India and Russia in Bay of Bengal would help develop common understanding of procedures for maritime security operations between the two Navies.
Chief of Eastern Fleet, Eastern Naval Command Rear Admiral SV Bhokare and Deputy Commander of Pacific Fleet, Vice Admiral Ryabukhin Andrey, said the two countries commenced bilateral maritime exercises in 2003 and the 8th edition of 'Indra Navy' series commenced yesterday off Visakhapatnam coast.
Following the onshore phase (on December 7-9), the sailors will practise antisubmarine operations and a live-fire exercise involving surface and aerial targets in the Bay of Bengal. The scenario also provides for assault teams supported by helicopters to reclaim a ship seized by simulated terrorists.
In the current exercise, Indian Navy is being represented by INS Sahyadri (an indigenous frigate), INS Ranvijay (a guided missile destroyer) and INS Shakti (a fleet support ship).
In addition, INS Sindhuvir submarine, the P8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft, Dornier short-range maritime patrol aircraft, Hawk advanced jet trainer and other integral rotary wing helicopters are also participating in the exercise.
The Russian Federation Navy (RFN) ships Varyag (cruiser), Bystry (destroyer), Alatau (rescue ocean going tug) and Boris Butoma (fleet tanker) are also taking part in the operation.
The city of Vishakhapatnam is in the state of Andhra Pradesh in the southeast of India. The Indian Navy’s Eastern Naval Command is headquartered there.