The 133 ship-strong Indian Navy force of today is expected to induct a further 49 ships and submarines in the coming years, making the Indian Navy of tomorrow a highly potent and balanced service with the right mix of ships, submarines and aircraft and be truly a blue water force, according to the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Eastern Naval Command Vice Admiral Anil Chopra.
Addressing the Republic Day parade at the Naval Base here on Thursday, he spoke how the Indian Navy had progressed since Independence. He reiterated that the exponential rise in offshore oil exploration and production, rapid increase in sea borne trade, greater impetus for development of ports and a steady growth in commercial traffic over the last decade had all enhanced the role and the responsibilities of the Command in ensuring safety and security of these trade and energy life lines in the eastern theatre. To this end, the Eastern Naval Command was now privileged to be home to the newest frontline force multipliers. In the very near future, he said, Visakhapatnam would be home to strategic platforms, additional P17 ships, ASW Corvettes, P8I Maritime Patrol Aircraft, Mig 29K Fighter and AJT Traineraircraft.
Admiral Chopra exhorted all personnel to drill, train and act decisively in meeting these commitments and in operating our platforms and equipment. He urged one and all to renew their pledge to secure India's maritime assets and further its maritime interests, wherever and whenever required, meeting the security challenges faced by the Nation and the expectations and trust of our countrymen.