New Delhi: Apiring to play a leading role in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR), India has deployed several of its ships in the area, including a fleet of four vessels which entered a Chinese port today as part of their sailing mission in South China sea.
Along with the deployment in South China sea and North West Pacific, Indian Navy has deployed its ships in Seychelles, Mauritius and Maldives in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) and INS Tabar has been put on convoy escort duty and anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden area, Navy officials said here.
Recently, while addressing the Naval Commander`s Conference, Defence Minister A K Antony has also highlighted the Navy`s role in the IOR.
"India`s strategic location in the Indian Ocean and the professional capability of our Navy bestows upon us a natural ability to play a leading role in ensuring peace and stability in the Indian Ocean Region," Antony had said.
Considering the challenges in the IOR, it is essential to maintain high levels of operational preparedness at all times, the Defence Minister had said.
The four warships entered the Sanghai port in China under the command of Eastern Naval Commander Rear Admiral P Ajith Kumar are INS Rana, INS Shivalik, INS Karmukh and INS Shakti.
Earlier in the deployment, the fleet also conducted the first ever bilateral maritime exercise between India and Japan, codenamed `JIMEX 12`.
"The Japan-India Maritime Exercise was conducted to commemoration 60 years of diplomatic relations between India and Japan," the officials said.
In Seychelles, India has sent INS Savitri where it will participate in the country`s National Day celebrations.
After the celebrations, for two months the ship will also
be deployed on surveillance duty along the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ) of Seychelles and Mauritius.
On request of the respective governments, the Indian Navy also maintains one Dornier surveillance aircraft at Seychelles and another aircraft is actively flying from Maldives, they said.
"The Western Fleet is also set to deploy four ships on an overseas deployment to Horn of Africa, Red Sea and the Western Mediterranean under the command of Rear Admiral A R Karve," the officials said.