Sunday, July 26, 2015

Kargil Rememberance Day, Chennai

To commemorate the glorious victory of our nation in Kargil in 1999 and in dedication to the memory of the personnel of all three services who laid down their lives for the territorial integrity of our Motherland in the highest battlefield of the world.  “Kargil Remembrance Day” is celebrated on 26 Jul every year.  The day marks the victory of human spirit and patriotism in those torrid heights of Kargil and Batalik and standards of professional ethics and values of the Indian Armed Forces.

To pay homage to the valiant brave hearts of the three Defence services who made the supreme sacrifice for our Nation in May-Jul 1999, solemn ceremonies are conducted at various places in the country where the sacrifices made by our valiant martyrs are honored by our nation with gratitude.

In Chennai, a Wreath Laying Ceremony was held at the Victory War Memorial located on the Beach Road.  Senior serving and retired officers of the three services, Junior Commissioned Officers and Jawans led by Lieutenant  General Jagbir Singh, General Officer Commanding, Dakshin Bharat Area laid wreaths and paid floral tributes on this solemn occasion, last post was also sounded in memory of their deceased comrades in arms.  Commodore Alok Bhatnagar, Naval Officer-in-Charge (Tamilnadu & Puducherry) and Air Commodore Rippon Gupta, Air Officer Commanding, Air Force Station, Tambaram also laid the wreaths. This was followed by observing a two minute silence as a mark of respect to noble souls. 

Kargil Vijay Diwas At Amar Jawan Jyoti

The Union Minister for Defence, Shri Manohar Parrikar accompanied by the Chief of Army Staff, General Dalbir Singh and the Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha paying homage to martyrs, at Amar Jawan Jyoti, India Gate, in New Delhi on July 26, 2015

Photos : Kargil Vijay Diwas

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

First Online Application Base Rally (Army) For Tamil Nadu

First online application base rally (Army) for Tamilnadu will be held for Districts of Chennai, Thiruvallur, Kanchipuram Vellore, Cuddalore, Villupuram, Tiruvannamalai & Puducherry from 04 Sep 2015.

The candidates can clarify all Army recruitment related queries from the online mobile application “Army Calling”. The application provides live chat facility in vernacular language for the aspiring candidates and can be downloaded from Google Play Store.

Keeping pace with current technological developments, Indian Army has made a major shift from open Rally system of recruitment to online application based recruitment. The new website of Directorate General Recruiting was launched by Lieutenant General Philip Campose, Vice Chief of Army Staff on 16 Jun 2015.

For State of Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, all recruitment rallies for Soldier category after 01 Sep 2015 will be based on online application. Eligible candidates can register themselves from numerous common service centre in Tamilnadu and Mee-Seva in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in addition to other available internet facilities.

With the launch of the website, the enrolment for officers entry (less UPSC entries) and recruitment for Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs)/ Other Ranks (ORs) entry in the Indian Army will go
On-Line. Based on schedules planned, on-line applications will now be invited for all officers entries, less through UPSC and department entries. For JCOs / ORs there will then b “called for recruitment”. Candidates can “check their eligibility” on
the website and can apply on-line for the chosen/eligible career options in the Indian Army.

For On-Line Applications, candidates are advised to carry Education qualification certificates (including Matriculation Certificate), Personal Details (including permanent address with PIN number, Verification/ Domicile certificate, Personal e-mail id and Personal Mobile number.

Colonel Avinash Pitre, Director Recruiting organised a press meet today in connection with latest On-Line recruitment process, at Recruiting Office in Chennai and appealed candidates that “Touts and agents have no role to play and Candidates are advised not to be lured by such agents”.

Decommissioning Ceremony of INS Astravahini

A very proud and sombre moment for Eastern Naval Command as INS Astravahini, an indigenously built Torpedo Launch and Recovery Vessel was decommissioned by Commodore KA Bopanna, Naval Officer-in-Charge (APD) in a ceremony held at the Ship Building Centre (V) at sunset on 16 July 2015. 

The ceremony commenced with an impressive guard of honour and culminated in hauling down of Naval Ensign for the last time at sunset. Commodore KA Bopanna, NOIC (APD), while addressing the crew and esteemed guests present during the ceremony, highlighted the contribution made by the vessel in the trials of indigenous torpedoes developed by NSTL..

An auxiliary vessel of the TLRV (torpedo launching and recovery) class, the ship was ordered to be built by NSTL in October 1981 for Defence Research and Development Activities. The Ship was commissioned on 05 November 1984 at Visakhapatnam and decommissioned today after serving the nation for almost 31 years. The only one of its class, the ship was extensively used by NSTL as a test platform to launch and recover experimental torpedoes prior their induction into the Navy. In her long service the ship has considerably enhanced the Make in India efforts of NSTL in indigenous torpedo induction. The ship was commanded by Lt Rohan Kulkarni.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Naval Chief To Visit Singapore & Thailand

Admiral RK Dhowan, the Chief of Naval Staff shall be proceeding on a five day visit to Singapore (20 -22 Jul) and Thailand (23 – 25 Jul). These visits are aimed at further consolidating the Navy to Navy cooperation and explore future avenues in further strengthening the relationship in accordance with India’s ‘Act East policy’.
Singapore Visit.      During the Singapore visit the CNS is scheduled to meet various dignitaries, notably the Defence Minister, Chief of Defence Forces and the Chief of Navy. Admiral Dhowan will also visit the prestigious Singapore Armed Forces Training Institute (SAFTI MI) for interaction with the faculty as well as young and middle level officers.  An overview of the operational facilities at Changi Naval base is also planned besides briefings on International Data Fusion Centre (IFC), Maritime Crisis Centre, Regional Humanitarian Assistance Disaster Relief (HADR) Coordination Centre (RHCC) and Maritime Security Task Force looking after coastal security of Singapore. 

India Singapore relations date back to Cholas who are credited with naming the Island and establishing a permanent settlement. In modern times, India was amongst the first countries to set up diplomatic relations after the independence of Singapore in 1965. The present engagements between the two countries span regular high level interactions including comprehensive defence cooperation.
Navy to Navy cooperation between the two countries covers almost the entire spectrum of naval operations. Bilateral exercise between the two navies started way back in 1994 and has matured into an all encompassing SIMBEX (Singapore India Maritime Bilateral Exercise). SIMBEX 15 was recently held in South China Sea in May 15 wherein ships and maritime patrol aircraft from both navies participated.

Thailand Visit.         The Chief of Naval Staff Admiral RK Dhowan shall also visit Thailand from 23 to 25 Jul 15 with an aim of reviewing and furthering the existing maritime cooperation at the highest level.

During his visit, the CNS is scheduled to interact with the Defence Minister, Chief of Defence Forces, Commander-in-Chief of Royal Thai Navy. Major areas being considered for furthering cooperation between the navies include hydrography, developing comprehensive Maritime Domain Awareness through exchange of White Shipping information, increasing scope of coordinated patrolling among other such areas.

India and Thailand located in each other’s extended neighborhood, share a maritime boundary in the Andaman Sea. India’s bilateral relations with Thailand are rooted in age old social and cultural interactions and extensive people to people contact. The shared links of Buddhism is reflected in regular pilgrimage to places of interest in India by a large number of Thai people. Thai language has substantial Pali and Sanskrit influence.

Over the past two decades, with regular political exchanges, growing trade and investment, India’s relationship with Thailand has now evolved into a comprehensive partnership. India’s ‘Act East' policy has been complemented by Thailand’s ‘Look West’ policy and has assisted in bringing the two countries together.

The Navy to Navy cooperation is the leading component of the defence cooperation between the two countries. Indian Navy regularly interacts with Royal Thailand Navy through Navy to Navy Staff Talks. Both Navies also interact in multilateral fora such as Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), Western Pacific Naval Symposium (WPNS), MILAN held biennially at Port Blair. Indian Navy and Thai Navy conduct Coordinated Patrolling (CORPAT) across International Maritime Boundary Line (IMBL) twice a year. Exchange of best practices and experiences and cooperation in Meteorology / Tsunami warning is another area wherein both navies cooperate.

Friday, July 17, 2015

XIV National Maritime Search & Rescue Board Meeting

The fourteenth National Maritime Search and Rescue (NMSAR) Board meeting was held at Gandhinagar today,17 July 2015, under the chairmanship of Vice Admiral HCS Bisht, AVSM, Director General Indian Coast Guard. The meeting was attended by Board Members from Coastal States/UTs and other agencies involved with Search and Rescue (SAR) operations in the region.

The Indian Coast Guard(ICG)ismandated to undertake duties of National Maritime Search and Rescue for assisting mariners in distress within the Indian Search and Rescue Region(SRR). Coordination for Maritime SAR Operations is done from the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centers(MRCCs)of the Indian Coast Guard, located at Mumbai, Chennai and Port Blair. In the last few years, the Govt. of Indiahas accorded enhanced impetus towards strengthening bilateral, regional and international cooperation in the domain of Maritime SAR,as envisaged under International Search and Rescue Convention,1979. The ICG has accordingly evolved cooperative mechanisms and signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOUs) with a number of maritime states in the Indian Ocean Region. It alsoconducts regular exercises with the maritime agencies of these states.

The Annual Board Meeting aims to evolve long term plans, discuss inter-agency co-ordination issues and workout modalities towards a strengthened framework for Maritime SAR in the Indian SRR. In the meeting held at Hotel NarayaniHeights, Gandhinagar today, the chairman re-iterated the requirement to augment SAR capabilities so as to cater forgrowingmaritime activity in the Indian SRR. A few important subjects discussed included mechanism for testing of Distress Beacons, synergy between aeronautical and maritime SAR and enhanced participation of merchant men in the SAR process.

It was for the first time that the meeting was conducted under the aegis of the Coast Guard Regional Headquarters (North West). During the meeting, the Chairman NMSAR Board Vice Admiral HCS Bisht also presented awards to ships/units/ boats for their contribution towards Search and Rescue at sea. The ICG award for best merchant vessel was awarded to MV ‘Maersk Privilege’, while the ICG award for fishermen was awarded to Fishing boat ‘L Aster’ from Kanyakumari. In the category of Government owned SAR unit, the M/s Essar SAR award was jointly presented to ICG Hovercraft H-194 and NIOT Offshore Research Vessel ‘SagarManjusha’. 

Army Chief Visits Eastern Command

Gen Dalbir Singh, Chief of the Army Staff is on a one day visit to Eastern Command, during which he visited Dimapur and Sukna.

During his visit the Army Chief emphasised on the need to maintain constant vigil along the borders.  He also directed that all operations in the hinterland must be people friendly and troops must be sensitised to uphold human rights and operate within the rules of engagement. 

He appreciated the efforts made by troops of Eastern Command for the work put in to maintain peace and stability in the region.

Indian Coast Guard Rescues Three Fishermen 70 Kms Off Poovar, Kerala Coast

On 14th July 15, Indian Coast Guard Station Vizhinjam recieved an information from District Collector Trivandrum regarding  three missing fishermen in a 'Vallam' which had departed Vizhinjam for fishing on 13th July 15. Immediately Coast Guard Stn Vizhinjam deployed ICGS C-427 for search of missing personnel. the search continued on 15th July 15 in coordination with Coast Guard Dornier aircraft from Kochi and Marine enforcement boats. In addition, one Coast Guard ship from Kochi on routine surveillance off Kerala coast was also diverted for the search.

Coast Guard Maritime rescue coordination centre (Mumbai) had activated ISN (International Safety Net) which passes information to all merchant ships transitting through area to provide necessary assistance on 16th July 15. Coast Guard authorities recieved an information from Merchant Vessel MV Smyrni regarding sighting of 3 personnel over a capsized Vallam boat about 70 kms off Poovar coast in deep sea.

ICGS C-427 which was already in search for missing personnel was diverted for search and rescue with maximum speed. Meanwhile Coast Guard Dornier aircraft was launched from kochi for a coordinated search. the aircraft located the fishing boat along with three fisherfolk. Despite heavy swells and rough sea conditions, ICGS C-427 proceeded with maximum speed and reached area at 10.30 am. The Coast Guard vessel rescued all three fishermen. ICGS C-427 will be entering Vizhinjam harbour along with rescued fishermen.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Indian Navy Conducts Seminar On Innovation & Indigenisation

In pursuance of the Govt of India’s ‘Make in India’ policy and the Indian Navy’s quest for ‘Self Reliance through Indigenous Development’, a seminar titled “Innovation and Indigenisation – Sailing towards Self Reliance” is being organised at DRDO Bhawan, New Delhi on 16 and 17 Jul 15.

The Union Minister for Defence, Shri Manohar Parrikar being felicitated by the Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral R.K. Dhowan, at the Seminar on the “Innovation and Indigenisation – Sailing towards Self Reliance”, in New Delhi on July 16, 2015.

Seminar on “Innovation and Indigenisation – Sailing Towards Self Reliance “ Gets Underway at New Delhi 

In pursuance of the Govt of India’s ‘Make in India’ thrust and achieving the Indian Navy’s goal of self-reliance through indigenous development, a two day seminar on “Innovation and Indigenisation – Sailing towards Self Reliance” was inaugurated today by Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral RK Dhowan at DRDO Bhawan, New Delhi. The seminar is being conducted by Indian Navy in association with the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). 

Vice Admiral AV Subhedar, Chief of Materiel delivered the opening address and stated that the seminar is a step in the direction of realizing the dream of “Make in India”. Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral RK Dhowan in his inaugural address brought out the need to harness cutting edge of technologies to increase the indigenisation content in future ships, submarines and aircraft. 

Hon’ble Raksha Mantri, Shri Manohar Parrikar in his keynote address called upon the industry to play a significant role in accomplishment of national security as well as the nation’s quest for self reliance. The minister appreciated the role of DRDO in supporting the efforts of the Navy in achieving their goals towards indigenization and lauded the efforts put in by the Indian Navy and CII for their efforts in supporting the nation’s thrust on “Make in India”. Hon’ble Raksha Mantri also released the document titled “Indian Naval Indigenisation Plan (INIP) and released the compendium of technical papers of seminar”. 

The gathering was also addressed by Shri Sukaran Singh and Shri Anil Ambani who gave the industry perspective of Innovation and Indigenisation. Ms Shubhra Singh JS, DIPP also addressed the gathering during the inaugural session. 

The seminar is spread over two days and is being attended by senior Government Officials, leaders from Ship Building Industry, Captains of Indian Industry and members of Academia besides officers from all the armed forces. More than 300 hundred dignitaries from over 120 industries are participating in the seminar. Four Sessions for presentation of technical papers have been scheduled in the programme over two days. Papers on ‘Synergy amongst stakeholders in Indigenisation’, ‘Innovation for Self Reliance’ ‘Challenges in induction of Indigenous Systems’ etc would be presented by speakers from IN, DPSUs, industry and academia. 

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Boeing & TATA Announce Strategic Aerospace Partnership To Make In India


- To co-produce aerostructures and collaborate on integrated systems development opportunities, including unmanned aerial vehicles

HYDERABAD, July 15, 2015 – Boeing and Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) today signed a framework agreement to collaborate in aerospace and defense manufacturing and potential integrated systems development opportunities, including unmanned aerial vehicles.  The companies intend to access markets jointly for products and platforms developed together by Boeing and TASL.

The agreement was signed by Shelley Lavender, president of Boeing Military Aircraft and Sukaran Singh, managing director and chief executive officer of TASL.

TASL is already on contract to manufacture aerostructures for Boeing’s CH-47 Chinook and AH-6i helicopters.

“This agreement with TASL is significant because it demonstrates Boeing’s commitment to expanding its aerospace manufacturing footprint in India,” Lavender said.

“As we step into our 100th year in business, a new aerospace partnership with India is the perfect milestone to accelerate the momentum we have generated for making in India,” said Pratyush Kumar, president for Boeing India. “It is noteworthy that TASL will produce Chinook helicopter parts in India even before the procurement contract is signed with the Indian government.”

“This framework agreement is the result of the world-class competencies of TASL as well as the vendor eco-system it has helped establish in India. It gives us an opportunity to explore the massive potential in India for aerospace manufacturing and make the investments required to grow the industry,” said Mr. S. Ramadorai, Chairman of TASL. “Boeing’s platforms require complex manufacturing processes within a competitive cost structure and we are confident that the partnership will be able to deliver high quality aerostructures out of India.”

Other Tata group companies – Tata Advanced Materials Limited (TAML) and TAL Manufacturing Solutions (TAL) – are also supplying important components to Boeing. TAML has delivered power and mission equipment cabinets and auxiliary power unit door fairings for the P-8I long range maritime surveillance and anti submarine warfare aircraft.  TAL is manufacturing complex floor beams out of composite materials for the Boeing 787-9, a modern aircraft with exceptional environmental and fuel efficient capabilities. TAL has provided ground support equipment for the C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifter.

About TASL
Tata Advanced Systems is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, focused on providing integrated solutions for Aerospace, Defence and Homeland Security. In a short span of five years, Tata Advanced Systems has become a significant player in the global Aerospace market, becoming the premier manufacturing partner for global OEMs, including Airbus Group, Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Pilatus Aircraft Ltd, Cobham Mission Equipment, RUAG Aviation, as well as the Government of India’s Defence Research & Development Organisation. It has capabilities throughout the entire Aerospace value chain from design to full aircraft assembly, and is well positioned in other areas that include missiles, radars, unmanned aerial systems, command and control systems, optronics and homeland security.

About Boeing
Boeing is the world's largest aerospace company and leading manufacturer of commercial jetliners and defense, space and security systems. A top U.S. exporter, the company supports airlines and U.S. and allied government customers in 150 countries. Boeing products and tailored services include commercial and military aircraft, satellites, weapons, electronic and defense systems, launch systems, advanced information and communication systems, and performance-based logistics and training.

Boeing has been active in India for more than 75 years with its commercial airplanes providing the mainstay of India’s civil aviation sector. More recently its military aircraft have played an important role in the modernization and mission-readiness of India’s defense forces. Boeing is focused on delivering value to its Indian customers with its advanced technologies and performance driven aircraft underscored by life-cycle support services. Boeing is also committed to creating sustainable value in the Indian aerospace sector - developing local suppliers, pursuing business partnerships and shaping research and technical collaborations with Indian companies and institutions. For more information, visit

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Wreckage Of Indian Coast Guard Dornier Recovered By Olympic Canyon

After one month the Indian Coast Guard Dornier Aircraft went missing, wreckage of the Aircraft was found at depths of 990 metres in position 17 Nautical Miles South East of Cuddolore which included the Flight Data Recorder, two Engines, Propellers, Tail and Tail Cone, Air Frame parts, Maevest, the Single line replacement unit, parts of the fuselage, part of the landing gear and the Cockpit Voice Recorder by the Reliance Vessel Olympic Canyon. The debris have been recovered from the sea bed by the vessel.

The recovery of Coast Guard Dornier 791 aircraft wreckage from the seabed off Tamil Nadu coast on 10 July 2015 was the result of ‘never say die’ spirit and the unrelenting efforts of Indian Coast Guard, Indian Navy and other agencies. It involved almost 700 hours of surface effort and nearly 200 hours of air effort by the Coast Guard, Navy, other specialized agencies of the centre and Reliance Industries Limited.

The ill-fated ICG Dornier CG-791 while on its routine night surveillance on 08 June 2015 suddenly disappeared from the radar located at Trichy when it was 32 miles north-east of Karaikal. At 2124 hours, the International Maritime Satellite (INMARSAT) terminal on board also suddenly powered off. Promptly the Regional HQs (East) launched a massive search and rescue (SAR) operational codenamed ‘Op Talash’ to locate the aircraft. 

Simultaneously, four ships and a long range maritime surveillance aircraft, P-8I, of the Indian Navy (IN) were also deployed for the operation. The Subsidiary Intelligence Bureau was also requested to activate the community information mechanism to sensitize local populace and fishermen were also apprised about the incident so that they could report sighting of any debris at sea. Initially, the Surface Search was undertaken based on information shared by Trichy radar. Subsequently, the initial position of the search was revised upto 70 nm seawards and the air search area was extended upto 180 nm based on inputs from Chennai ATC Radar and powering off of the INMARSAT. 

A ray of hope emerged on 12 June 2015, with the sighting of a thin oil sheen which proved to be short lived as the sample was found to be devoid of any oil derivatives. Thereafter a request was forwarded on 12 June 2015 to the IN and National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), for underwater search. A Black Box detector from NIOT was fitted onboard Coast Guard Ship Vigraha.

The major challenge in the conduct of the underwater search was that the seabed in the search area had a steep gradient. Though the IN ship reported receipt of 06 pings (sub-surface transmission) on 37.5 KHz frequency, however as no subsequent transmission were received, firm position could not be localized. Thereafter on 13 June 2015, IN submarine Sindhudhwaj commenced search in the area of 15x15 Sq NM. The submarine reported sporadic sub-surface reception but as the signal was weak, the position could not be established once again.

NIOT Research Vessel (RV) Sagar Nidhi was also engaged for the seabed profiling but no aircraft debris was located. With no definite lead, assistance was sought from M/s Reliance India Limited for services of Multi Support Vessel (MSV) Olympic Canyon equipped with Remotely Operated Underwater Vessel (ROV) High Precision Acoustic Positioning Equipment (HIPAP) for undertaking sub-surface search, extended the support ‘on GRATIS basis.’ The vessel commenced the search in an area identified by ICG, spanning over 500 x 500 m area, utilizing underwater camera fitted on ROV.

INS Sindhudwaj, redeployed by the Indian Navy on 06 July 2015, picked up a barrage of transmissions at a depth of 990 metres from the (SLB) Sonar Locator Beacon of the missing aircraft. This proved to be the precise thread to approach the elusive source. The Reliance, upon request redeployed the MSV on 10 July 2015 commenced the search in positions identified by the submarine. The breakthrough was made by MSV Olympic Canyon on the morning of 10 July 2015.

33 days after the ICG aircraft went missing, wreckage of the aircraft was found at depths of 990 meters in position 17 NM S/E of Cuddolore which included the flight data recorder, Two Engines, Propellers, Tail and tail cone, air frame parts, Maevest, the Single Line Replacement unit, parts of the fuselage, part of the landing gear and the Cockpit Voice Recorder by the Reliance Vessel Olympic canyon. The debris have been recovered from the sea bed by the vessel.

The operation mounted for the missing CG 791  with participation of large number of national agencies is unprecedented in the maritime SAR history of India. Apart from ICG,  the IN, IAF, NIOT, INCOIS, NRSA, Naval Physical Oceanographical Laboratory, Naval Operations Data Processing & Analysis Center, the Airport Authority Of  India Limited, Coastal Security Group Tamil Nadu, Reliance Industries Limited & Omkar foundation have contributed to the undersea SAR mission. However, the role played by the IN submarine in locating the wreckage and more importantly by MSV Olympic Canyon in undertaking the mammoth task of salvage in rough sea conditions is very noteworthy.