As strategic partners, and Indian Ocean littoral neighbours, India and Indonesia have been looking at strengthening their defence ties as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s `Act East policy’. Indian Naval assets have been increasingly deployed to address maritime concerns of the Indian Ocean Region (IOR).
On Thursday, Indian Naval Ship Kulish, a Kora class missile corvette, and an Indian Dornier (naval maritime time patrol aircraft) from Andaman and Nicobar command entered Belawan harbour, Indonesia for the 32nd edition of India – Indonesia coordinated patrol (IND-INDO CORPAT), to be held from Oct 11 – 27 Oct. This deployment is expected to contribute towards the Indian Navy’s effort to forge strong bonds of friendship across the seas and consolidate inter-operability.
The Coordinated Patrol while reflects the shared concerns between the two countries for a peaceful Indian Ocean for the benefit of international community, it also enhances mutual understanding and inter–operability between the two navies.
Under the strategic partnership, navies of both countries have been carrying out coordinated patrolling twice a year since 2002 near the International Maritime Boundary Line in an effort to keep the Indian Ocean region safe and secure for commercial shipping and international trade.
The ships and aircraft from both the countries would undertake patrolling on the respective sides of 236 nautical miles long International Maritime Boundary Line. The patrolling would be conducted in three phases, followed by a closing ceremony at Port Blair, Andaman and Nicobar Island.
According to the Indian Navy, “The visit seeks to emphasize India’s peaceful presence and solidarity with friendly countries towards ensuring good order in the maritime domain, consolidate interoperability and strengthen existing bonds of friendship between the two countries.”
During their stay in Belawan, various activities are planned such as official calls, formal reception onboard, ship open to visitors and professional interactions.
Also, as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region), the Indian Navy has also been involved in assisting countries in the IOR with EEZ Surveillance, Search and Rescue, other capacity -building and capability-enhancement activities.