Ramanathapuram: As part of stepping up surveillance, the Uchipuli naval base would soon commission an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle squadron.
The objective of the UAV squadron is to strengthen surveillance and reconnaissance in the Gulf of Mannar, Palk Strait and Palk Bay, official sources said.
The new squadron `INAS 344` would be operated from INS Parundu, the Naval air station at Uchipuli. This is will be the Navy`s third UAV squadron. The others are based at Kochi in Kerala and Porbandar in Gujarat.
According to Captain AB Bellary, Commanding Officer, INS Parundu, the squadron would comprise four units of two Israeli-built Searcher and Heron UAVs. The team would comprise of 50 sailors and 12 officers.
Infrastructure for operating UAV had been created, officials said, adding that professionals operating the UAV would be given training and their operational proficiency improved.