Mumbai: Asserting that the Indian Navy`s visibility in the Indian Ocean has increased, Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Nirmal Verma on Tuesday said its ships are giving adequate protection to merchant vessels in the ocean.
"Our ships also go to the places in the Island nations where piracy is on rise. We help them out. We are very much visible in the Indian Ocean," Admiral Verma told reporters after the commissioning of the naval base depot INS `Tanaji` at Mankhurd in Eastern suburbs.
In deepening maritime engagements with coutries in the far east, he said the Navy`s eastern fleet task force had held joint exercises with their Japanese counterparts, the Chinese Navy and Philipines Navy.
"Today, the expectations, demands and educational qualifications of our sailors are significantly greater than before and consequently there is a need to be completely attentive to their aspirations," he said.
The Navy has established the armament depot in Mankhurd, which would be followed by the weapon equipment depot, store house of material organisation and production centres of Naval dockyard.
"The commissioning of INS Tanaji, named after Maratha warrior Tanaji Malusare, at Mankhurd today is therefore formal recognition of Navy`s presence and continuing commitment towards the city of Mumbai," he said.
He said the strength of the Navy has more than doubled since the time when the bureau shifted in 1982 to this location (Mankhurd). "The numbers continue to grow as the Navy`s functional requirement increases, with nation`s geo-strategic responsibilities," he added.
The bureau also holds responsibilities with respect to human resource management of the sailors, he said.
The ceremony was attended by Flag officer, Commanding in Chief Western Naval Command, Vice-Admiral DK Joshi.