India's largest naval ship, the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, will visit Colombo from today until January 23 January.
The INS Vikramaditya will be accompanied by a destroyer, INS Mysore. The ships are transiting from the West Coast of India to the city of Visakhapatnam on the East Coast of India to participate in the International Fleet Review being hosted by the Indian Navy next month. Naval ships from more than 25 countries, including Sri Lanka, will be participating at this event, the Indiaqn High Commission said in release.
The visit to Colombo by INS Vikramaditya will be its maiden overseas port call after its arrival in India two years ago, and is a manifestation of the close maritime cooperation and mutual trust between India and Sri Lanka. INS Vikramaditya is the largest and newest of the two aircraft carriers operated by the Indian Navy, and is equipped with a variety of integral weapons and sensors. It operates a versatile range of high-performance aircraft, such as the MiG 29K fighter aircraft, KM 31 Airborne Early Warning helicopters, multi-role Sea King helicopters and utility Chetak helicopters. The ship is over 285 metres long and 60 metres wide, with her 23 decks scaling a height of 60 metres. The accompanying ship, INS Mysore, is a frontline missile destroyer made in India.
During their halt in Colombo, the crew of the ships will have professional interactions with their Sri Lanka counterparts. In addition, a number of sports and social engagements are planned aimed at strengthening ties and mutual understanding between the two Navies. While departing Colombo, the ships will participate in a Passage Exercise with the Sri Lanka Navy.
The visit of the ships will provide an opportunity to further deepen the interaction between the two Navies, who undertake a joint exercise, SLINEX, every alternate year.
The Indian Navy also hosts a number of trainees from Sri Lanka Navy in its professional training institutes.
Flag Officer Commanding Western Fleet, Rear Admiral Ravneet Singh, NM will fly his flag onboard INS Vikramaditya.
INS Vikramaditya is commanded by Captain Krishna Swaminathan, while INS Mysore is commanded by Captain M. Paul Samuel.
(DN - 21012016)