Major Naval security exercise conducted

Major Naval security exercise conducted

Major Naval security exercise conducted

The Indian Navy is conducting a major exercise off the coast of Gujarat and Maharashtra to ensure safety and security along the porous shoreline.

Named the “Defence of Gujarat Exercise”, the week-long drill involves Indian Navy's Delhi-class destroyers, the Teg stealth frigate, indigenous Godavari frigates and 1241 RE missile boats from the 22 Killer Squadron.

Coast Guard patrol vessels were integrated into the operations to provide multiple layers of defensive surveillance.

The large-scale exercise, which concludes on Tuesday, has also witnessed the flight of naval surveillance aircraft, like the Tu-142M, IL-38 with Sea Dragon suite as well as the Dorniers. Israeli unmanned aerial vehicles Searcher and Heron, used by the Navy, were also pressed into operation.

Aimed to test Indian Navy's readiness in protecting oil fields and crude supply lines, the exercise also included patrol vessels and minesweepers to ensure establishment of a high-strength security net along the western seaboard.

A day before the naval exercise ended, Defence Minister A K Antony held a detailed review meeting of the security scenario with three service chiefs and National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon. The one-hour-long meeting was also attended by the defence secretary and other top officials.

The security review was held in the backdrop of Pakistan increasing the number of ceasefire violations along the Line of Control and the International Border, with more than 200 such incidents being reported with two months to spare in this calender year.

A Defence Ministry spokesperson, however, refused to divulge what transpired at the  meeting.

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