Ahoy Hello Namaste – International Fleet Review

The Eastern Naval Command (ENC) will, for the first time, host the International Fleet Review 2016. Warships from over 60 maritime nations will be invited to participate in the event. This would be the second time that the Indian Navy will be hosting the International Fleet Review after the one held in Mumbai in 2001.

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Indian President Pranab Mukherjee will be the chief guest. And Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defense Minister Manohar Parikar, Andhra Pradesh Governor ESL Narasimhan and AP CM Chandrababu Naidu are among others. President of India being the chief of all the armed forces, review as part of the president fleet review, at least once in his period. This review is to assuring the country war preparedness.

After a 21-gun salute and the ceremonial Guard of Honour the President will embark the Presidential Yacht, distinguishable by the Ashoka emblem on her side and flying the President’s Standard on the Mast. The Presidential Yacht will weave through the 70 ships planned to be at anchorage off Visakhapatnam Port. As the President Yacht passes between the review anchor columns, each ship dressed in full regalia, will salute the President.

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Interestingly, Latin American nations, who abstained from participating in the previous IFR, have confirmed their presence in the second edition. The list of participating global navies include – Peru, Chile, Colombia, Brazil, along with the United States of America, China, Canada, Russia, the United Kingdom, Australia, France, South Africa, Japan and South Korea.

In all between 75-100 ships from 60 Nations will participate making it truly a spectacular display of Naval Firepower.
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The Review Anchorage would have an awe-inspiring combination of Naval Warships from Indian Navy as well as frontline Navies from across the globe. In addition, the ships of the Indian Coast Guard and Mercantile Marine would be participating.

In this most formal of naval ceremonies, vessels from all countries are anchored in lines at the precise spot allotted to them. Each ship is manned by her ship’s company, dressed in white ceremonial uniforms. In a moment, white caps are doffed in unison in a grand salutation. The resounding sound of ‘Three Jais’ by the IN ships echoes over the waves symbolising the spirit of camaraderie and bonhomie across the seas.

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Along the way, the President will also witness operational demonstrations in the form of a breathtaking flypast by the naval air-arm and a daring display by the elite Marine Commandoes. The skills of the yachtsmen of Navy embodying the spirit of adventure will also be on display. During the final stage of the review, a mobile column of warships and submarines will carry out a high speed steam past alongside the Presidential Yacht.

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During the Review, the President will also review the Indian Naval Air Arm. A spectacular flypast led by Rear Admiral PK Bahl, Flag Officer Naval Aviation will be conducted as part of the static review of the Fleet. The flypast will comprise 15 formations of 45 aircraft including two formations from the Indian Coast Guard.

This display will also showcase the latest acquisitions of the Indian Navy such as the carrier borne Strike fighter MIG 29K, Long Range Maritime Reconnaissance aircraft, P8I and the AEW helicopter KM-31.

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This International Fleet Review will also be a bit different since this is the last tour of duty of INS Viraat.

The 28,000-tonne INS Viraat, which embarked six Sea Harrier jump-jets as well as six Sea King and four Chetak helicopters from Goa on Wednesday, is in Visakhapatnam to takepart in Interntional Fleet Review.

“This will be INS Viraat’s last journey, a cross-coasrt in the International Fleet Review (IFR) t deployment signalling the end of her yeoman service for India before she is retired later this year. On her way back to Mumbai, she will call on all major Indian ports as a final salute,” said a senior officer on Wednesday.

Originally commissioned in the British Royal Navy as HMS Hermes in November 1959, the 13-storey high carrier was inducted into the Indian Navy as INS Viraat on May 12, 1987. “Mother”, as she is still affectionately called, packed quite a punch in her days of glory. She represented two acres of sovereign Indian territory cruising on the high seas, ready to unleash her fighters and other weapons against enemies in a jiffy.

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Schedule of International Fleet Review 2016

  • 04 Feb 2016 Wreath Laying Event

Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : 1971 War Memorial, off RK Beach Road

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 04 Feb 2016 Maritime Exhibition and IFR Village

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : Andhra University Grounds

Attendance : Open to Public

  • 05 Feb 2016 CNS Press Conference

Event Starts : Forenoon Hours

Venue : Hotel Novotel – Convention Center

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 05 Feb 2016 Opening Ceremony

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : INS Satavahana Stadium

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 06 Feb 2016 Fleet Review Event

Starts : Forenoon Hours

Venue : Off Visakhapatnam Harbor

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 06 Feb 2016 Indian Naval Band Concert

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : Samudrika Naval Auditorium

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 06 Feb 2016 Presidential Banquet

Event Starts : Evening Hours

Venue : Eastern Naval Command Officers’ Mess

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 07 – 08 Feb 2016 International Maritime Conference

Event Starts : 0900 h – 1400 h

Venue : Taj Gateway – Godavari Hall

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 07 Feb 2016 International City Parade

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : Off RK Beach

Attendance : Open to Public

  • 07 Feb 2016 CNS Reception

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : Hotel Novotel – Convention Center

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 08 Feb 2016 Closing Ceremony

Event Starts : Afternoon Hours

Venue : Naval Institute

Attendance : By Invitation

  • 09 – 11 Feb 2016 Passage Exercise and Sail in Company

Event Starts : 0900 Hrs – 1500 Hrs

Venue : Passage Exercise and Sail in Company

Attendance : Registered Media