New Delhi: “In defence...noooooo politics please”, this would be the familiar answer of the Defence Minister A K Antony, whenever he is asked any question relating to politics or having even a shade of political tone.

So, when the Indian Navy held a week long Exercise termed as ‘Defence of Gujrat’, one must not stretch his or her imagination to club it with Namonia fever which seems to be gripping political scene these days in the election year. This must be purely security related drill to counter any threat from Pakistan side. 


            The aim of this “large scale annual operational exercise” of the Western Naval Command was to test the operational readiness of the Western Naval Command in relation to littoral combat and the defence of vital offshore assets in the northern coastal states of Western seaboard of India, an official press statement said. 

In addition to large ship’s like Delhi class destroyers, Teg and Godavari class frigates operating under the Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet (FOCWF) the exercise also involved a large number of vessels of the local flotilla including potent missile vessels of the 22nd Killer Squadron, Patrol Vessels and Minesweepers operating under the Flag Officer Commanding Maharashtra and Gujarat Naval Area (FOMAG).


Coast Guard Patrol Vessels, integrated into the operations played a key part in providing multiple layers of defensive surveillance. In addition to ships, the exercise also witnessed intense flying activity by the TU 142Ms, IL-38SDs, IN and CG Dorniers and Searcher and Heron UAVs.

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