Indian Navy took over the airfield from the Airport Authority of India, which in turn had inherited the runway from the erstwhile Raja of Ramnad. The station started functioning as a forward airbase of the Navy with rudimentary infrastructure and most of the aircraft operated only on a temporary basis. ‘Operation Flamingo’ was instituted in 1984 with the aim of patrolling the Palk bay and to prevent violation of the international maritime boundary (IMBL) by the fishermen. It was followed by ‘Operation Pawan’ from Jul 87 to Mar 90, the primary aim of which was to establish sea control to the approaches to the eastern shores of Sri Lanka. During the early days Chetak and Islanders operated from this unit. Subsequently, Dornier also started operations during the nineties.
Naval Air Station (Ramnad) was inaugurated in February 1987 as a Forward Operating Base (FOB) to meet the operational tasks for ‘Op Pawan’ and thereafter for Op Tasha. The station was initially designated as Rajali II and placed under the operational control of INS Rajali. The station was later designated as NAS Ramnad and placed under NOIC(TN). The station initially operated Islander aircraft and Chetak. Presently the station is operating UAV, Chetak and Dornier aircraft.
Vision & Role
The resurgence of the South - East Asian region as a major economic power house and the shifting of the economic epicenter of the World from the developed economies of the west to the rapidly rising economies of Asia has resulted in phenomenal rise of the volume of trade through the sea routes of the Indian Ocean. This has rendered the Indian Ocean region strategically important and the safety of the sea lanes vital for the continuous economic prosperity of our nation as also all the developing economies of the South-East Asia.
In the quest to safeguard the maritime interests of our nation and also to make the sea area safe, embarked on augmentation of naval presence and capabilities in the region is a prime requirement. This air station is poised on the threshold of rapid growth to keep vigil over the South-Eastern peninsula. INS Parundu provides SAR coverage and conducts operational sorties over Palk Bay area on regular basis. The air station also provides transit facilities for IN / CG Dornier. With induction of the UAVs in the station, this FOB has become the Navy’s eyes and ears for the region and supplements its capability to react speedily to any forms of threat.
The following are few of the functional roles and operational tasks of the Naval air station : -
- Coastal / Area Surveillance.
- Real time intelligence gathering.
- Search & Rescue (SAR) missions.
- Damage Assessment (during Battle and post Natural Disaster).
- Aid to civil administration.
he following are some of the major achievement in the recent times : -
- Commissioning and Operationalisation of INAS 344.
- Swift response towards SAR requirements received from local authorities.
- Surveillance of Palk Bay and Guld of Mannar region by station air assets.
- Timely and prompt aid for extinguishing major fire in shopping complex in Ramnad city on 23 Feb 12 and at nearby village Perunkulam on 29 Jun 12.
- Tsunami Relief Operations. Prompt and swift assistance to locals during Tsunami relief operations in Dec 04.
- Flood Relief OperationsThe station successfully undertook flood relief operations at Kattaboman in Dec 10 by positioning aircraft and fueling bowser at short notice. Carried out relief operations during extensive.
flooding during monsoon in 2011.