Wednesday, May 13, 2015

INS Sardar Patel

INS Sardar Patel

           Indian navy is an expanding force, in the process of converting itself from a brown water navy to blue water navy. Navy has The government has understood the need for the modernization of this crucial arm and the Indian navy is one of the leading arms to adopt the ‘Make in India’ program. The fleet has been steadily strengthened with various ships and submarines nearing completion or at least entering test phases. Indian navy has seen very minimal number of bases being commissioned over the years, but that has changed with India commissioning INS Sardar Patel. 

    These bases host warships during off duty times and support the ships and make sure the ship and crew are fit for another deployment when required. The current Mumbai port is flooded with commercial traffic, large container vessels have chocked the berthing and Indian navy doesn’t hold an all exclusive shipyard other than INS Kadamba. Without an exclusive base the risks of naval ships being sabotaged by enemies using cargo ships and small boats is extremely high.

           Indian navy for long had opted for bases along the western coast and after INS Kadamba, navy had chosen places along the Gujarat coast to develop strategic bases. Indian navy after a long assessment choose Porbandar which already had an airstrip which was operating unmanned aircrafts, small sized special mission flights and tactical aircrafts. Porbandar also act as and forward operating base and would be one of the first responders if India went to war with Pakistan.  The base will also enhance the ship's operating capability's by providing logistic
supports and quick navigation supports.

          Unlike other small naval bases which are spread across the coast line,  INS Sardar Patel is a fully fledged naval base which can host huge Surface vessels and can at the same time take care of the needs pertaining to the maintenance of the vessels. The base will help in tracking the maritime traffics and can thus control unauthorized trade activities along the region.

            Securing Gujarat's long maritime border has been an big challenge for the navy, but with the facilities available with the commissioning of INS Sardar Patel, the problem seems to have finally received a logically conclusion. Areas along the Gujarat sea line are believed to be rich in natural resources and also house several rich oil rigs, these oil rigs can be an easy target for the enemy during war, securing these economic pillars is an crucial task bestowed upon the navy and with the facilities available the navy is surely arriving at an solution that will only make the region grow prosperous over time.

           During last six months, two suspected boats possibly carrying terrorists and smugglers were seized by the coast guard, and these boats were intercepted off Gujarat coast, the CG's has received substantially help by the navy and the CG’s had operated out of their base in Porbandar.

           The base comes is well defended against any threats by foreign nations, photos have emerged showing 4K40-4K51 Rubezh Coastal Defence System, which is aging coastal defence system, the navy has floated tenders for acquiring modern coastal mobile defense systems, Naval Strike Missile and Brahmos are in the offer. Navy has for long stressed upon indigenised products, going by which Brahmos based coastal Anti ship missile systems should be emerging to counter any hostilities exhibited out towards the base.

Editor Karthik kakoor 

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