Mumbai: Asserting that the Indian Navy`s visibility in the Indian Ocean has increased, Chief of Naval Staff, Admiral Nirmal Verma on Tuesday said navy 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 countries in the Far East, he said the Navy`s Eastern fleet task force had held joint exercises with their Japanese, Chinese and Philipine counterparts.
"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 Navy`s strength has grown more than double as compared to the period when the bureau shifted in 1982 to 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 D K Joshi.