As part of Naval cooperation between Indian and the UK, Indian Navy (IN) and Royal Navy (RN) have started their exercise, Konkan 2018 on Wednesday (28) and the war game will continue until 6 December off Goa.
The harbour phase is scheduled from November 28 to 30, followed by the sea phase from 2 to 6 December. The Royal Navy is represented by HMS Dragon, a type 45 class destroyer equipped with an integral Wildcat helicopter.
The Indian Navy fielded INS Kolkata, the first ship of latest Kolkata class destroyers, equipped with integral seeking and an IN submarine. In addition, IN maritime patrol aircraft, Dornier is also participating in the exercise.
The regular IN-RN interaction over the years has resulted in an increase in the professional content of the bilateral exercise. The thrust of the exercise this year would be on anti-air warfare, anti-surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, visit board search and seizure (VBSS), and seamanship evolutions.
The Konkan series of exercises commenced in 2004, and since then has grown in scale. Besides exercises at sea, Konkan -2018 also encompasses professional interactions and sports fixtures.
The exercise is aimed at deriving mutual benefit from each others’ experiences and is indicative of the continuing cooperation between the two countries. The inter-operability achieved over the years as a result of such exercises has proved to be operationally beneficial to both navies.
The naval cooperation is a tangible symbol of the commitment of both nations in ensuring a positive climate at sea for enhancing strategic stability and promoting economic prosperity.
Naval cooperation between India and the UK is based on the long-term strategic relationship between both countries. Both Navies have, over the years, undertaken bilateral activities such as training exchanges and technical cooperation.
The Bilateral Konkan exercise provides a platform for the two Navies to periodically exercise at sea and in harbour, so as to build interoperability and share best practices.