Photos: MoD PRO Kochi. (Press Release below)
Southern Naval Command conducted a demonstration of its operational capabilities for the city of Kochi on December 12 at the sea facing Rajendra Maidan and Netaji Subhash Park. The entire spectrum of naval operational activities was included in the demonstration; within the limitations imposed by contours and depth of Kochi channel and other technical limitations. His Excellency Sri RS Gavai, the Governor of Kerala was the Chief Guest at the event where the residents of Kochi turned out in huge numbers.
The function started with a fly past by various Navy aircraft including the giant TU- 142 aircraft from Chennai and the IL-38 from Goa. Thereafter the marine Commandos carried out a simulated beach reconnaissance and assault with the leader of the team coming ashore in his menacing combat rig to deliver the programme brochure to the Chief Guest. This was followed by a demonstration of water sports including waterskiing and jet skiing. Next, the six member Indian Navy Sky Diving team touched down precisely at the venue from a Seaking helicopter. The next item was the demonstration of a VBSS (Visit, Board, Search and Seize) operation where the Commandos in fast rigid inflatable boats swooped down on a hostile vessel and overpowered it. The helicopter demonstrations included the Dhruv helicopter flying past the crowd with a jeep under slung, STIE( small team insertion and extraction) operation where commandos were dropped and withdrawn from a hostile area and breathtaking helobatics by two Dhruvs. A Chetak helicopter also demonstrated landing on the helicopter deck of a moving ship. The helicopter also demonstrated a rescue of a person fallen in the water.
Yet another heart stopping visual was the simulated destruction of an oil rig by Marine Commandos. INS Kalpeni and the Coast Guard Ship C144, two modern water jet propelled Fast Attack Craft demonstrated their maneuvering skills by turning around a full circle in the Kochi channel. After the solemn sun set ceremony, Navy and Coastguard ships steamed past with their illumination lights switched on. The heartwarming show ended with a fly past of all Aircraft from INS Garuda in THANKYOU formation with Commodore VK Garg leading the formation.