- Returns after 2001
New Delhi. 14 Oct, 2015. After a long wait of fifteen years over 50 navies from around the world will participate in the International Fleet Review to be held off Vishakhapatnam in February next year.
Interesting news is that China will send both ship and delegation, Pakistan has not responded favourably, no foreign submarine had confirmed its participation and both the Indian aircraft carriers, Vikramaditya and Virat, would be participating in the review.
The Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral RK Dhowan announced the Indian Navy’s plans to conduct an International Fleet Review (IFR) on the Eastern Seaboard at Visakhapatnam from 04 – 08 February 2016, which would be reviewed by Pranab Mukherjee, The President of India on 06 February 2016. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will preside over Op Demo and the International City Parade.
The IFR would be held on the eastern seaboard in Visakhapatnam from February 4 to 8, 2016, the Navy chief said. IFR would be reviewed by President Pranab Mukherjee. Prime Minister Narendra Modi would attend the event as would several guests.
While raising the curtains from the event of the decade, Admiral RK Dhowan said
, “During the International Fleet Review, the navies of the world will come together at Visakhapatnam to strengthen bridges of friendship. We may be separated by geography, but we are certainly united through oceans. The visiting navies will also have the opportunity to display their professional skills as they sail together for exercises to increase mutual cooperation and interoperability, with the underlying theme of keeping the global commons safe and secure in the 21st
A Naval Fleet Review is a long-standing tradition of navies world-over. The Review was conceived as a show of naval
might and readiness for battle. In India, thus far, ten Reviews have been held, with the first in 1953 and the latest in 2011. The Review aims at assuring the country of the Indian Navy’s preparedness, high moral and discipline.
“As far as Pakistan is concerned, our High Commission in Islamabad has informed us that they have not received a favourable response from them. It is not that Pakistan has always kept away from naval events organised by India. Pakistan had participated in the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) earlier,” he added.
In the current geo-political scenario, seafarers of the world, represented by their navies have taken a leading role in
bringing nations together by steadily increasing cooperation at sea. One of the important ways used by the navies to enhance cooperation and promote friendship amongst the seafaring community is through the conduct of the Fleet Review. The leading nations of the world use the opportunity provided by the Fleet Review to enhance mutual trust and confidence with their maritime neighbours by inviting their ships to participate in the Review.
On being asked if the Navy has any plans to induct women in combat roles as many of the Navies coming in for the International Fleet Review will have women officers onboard their ships, the Chief responded that the Navy has looked into how to increase the participation of women in other arenas of Naval way of life and the lady officers will definitely have major roles in the fleet review.
The Second International Fleet Review in India will attract 100 warships from 60 countries. The first was organised in Mumbai in February 2001 and saw a participation over 60 warships from 22 countries. While 90 nations have been invited, 10 of them landlocked countries, 46 have so far confirmed their participation.
Thereafter other activities are planned including International Maritime Conference, Exhibition on Naval systems and indigenisation, etc. at Visakhapatnam, which is also headquarters of Eastern Naval Command.
The Naval authorities and the Vizag city police have started security preparations for the IFR. Authorities have reportedly identified around 30 hubs for setting up 400 surveillance cameras on RK Beach Road, where 60 to 70 war ships and submarines from different countries are expected to be showcased. Around 7,000 security personnel are likely to be deployed from all the 13 districts, including AP Special Police and the elite anti-naxalite force Greyhounds, along with the Navy police and paramilitary forces like CRPF. Apart from this, marine commandos, special protection group (SPG) and other elite forces will also be deployed during the event.
And the count down to the most looked forward to event to be hosted by India has begun with this announcement. The CNS released a brochure and also put live the website created specially for the event along with the mobile app of the event. That’s the way to match steps with the world is a global village theory and a tech savvy Navy.