Kochi Mesmerised by the Naval Operational Demonstration
The citizens of Kochi were treated to a mesmerising display of the entire spectrum of naval operations during the Naval Operational Demonstrations 2018 that showcased the operational capabilities of the Indian Navy. The event, held in front of Rajendra maidan and Subhash park on 02 December 2018 was hosted by Vice Admiral Anil Kumar Chawla, AVSM, NM, VSM, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Naval Command. Shri Justice (Retd) P Sathasivam, Hon’ble Governor of Kerala, was the Chief Guest for the event, which was attended by various dignitaries including the Mayor of Kochi, Ms Soumini Jain, the District Collector of Ernakulam, Shri K Mohammed Y Safirulla, and witnessed by thousands of residents of Kochi from Marine Drive and Subhash Park water front.
Eight ships, nine helicopters and three Dornier aircraft along with Marine Commandos participated in the Operational Demonstrations, which took place after a gap of two years. The event was cancelled last year, due to the involvement of the Navy in Search and Rescue and Disaster Relief efforts in the aftermath of Cyclone Ockhi. This year too, the Navy had been at the forefront of relief efforts during the recent Kerala floods. Consequently, the demonstration of its rescue and lift capabilities in particular touched a chord with the spectators.
The display, which lasted for more than an hour and included demonstration of landing a Seaking helicopter on a moving warship, firing of weapons, special operations by the marine commandos from air and water, simulation of visit, board, search and seizure operations etc. and Helobatics by the Advanced Light Helicopter. INS Ranvijay, one of the older Destroyers of the Indian Navy with its sleek silhouette provided the perfect backdrop to the entire event.
A continuity drill performed by two contingents from INS Dronachrya stood out for its stunning and precise discipline and skills in weapon handling as also the traditional hornpipe dance by the girl cadets of the sea cadet corps which was an epitome of grace and elegance. The demonstration concluded with a 'Beating Retreat,' comprising inspiring martial music played by the Naval Band followed by a ceremonial ‘sunset ceremony’, along with synchronised illumination by naval ships in the Kochi channel.