In a bid to test its operational preparedness and try out new strategies of naval operations, the Indian Navy is preparing for an exercise in the Arabian Sea in which assets of the Mumbai-based Western Naval Command would be employed. With the withdrawal of the monsoon and improved sea conditions, this is the right time to test our operational preparedness, validate procedures and try out new strategies and concepts of naval operations, a naval spokesperson said in a statement on 20 October 2019.
 
 
What
  1. Live firing drills, helicopter operations from ships, operational logistics and communication standard operating procedures (SOP) are some of the areas that will form the core of these planned exercises in order to hone the operational skills, testing of training efficacy and validate existing seamanship practices and procedures.
  2. It is customary for the Navy to gear up for exercises and deployments immediately following the monsoon season, taking advantage of improved conditions at sea. 
  3. This is the ideal time to fine-tune our deployment concepts, test communication plans, exercise contingencies at sea and validate our inputs towards better maritime domain awareness.
  4. The Indian Navy has been a key presence in the Arabian Sea following its prolonged anti-piracy deployments in the Gulf of Aden and Op Sankalp off the Gulf of Oman.
  5. The Western Naval Command also recently concluded an offshore security and contingency exercise code-named 'Prasthan' on October 17.
  6. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had also embarked on the Western Fleet last month and the Navy had exercised carrier-based evolutions and fighter operations during the event. 
Flashback
  1. The Offshore Security and Contingency exercise code-named ‘Prasthan’ was conducted in the Offshore Development Area (ODA) off Mumbai on 17 October 2019. 
  2. The bi-annual exercise aims to integrate all maritime stakeholders like the Indian Navy, Indian AirForce, Indian Coast Guard and MarinePolice towards refining SOPs for response to various contingencies that could occur in the ODAs. 
  3. The exercise was conducted on an offshore platform of ONGC, located West of Mumbai to streamline actions in case of various contingencies. 
  4. The exercise provided a realistic scenario for all stakeholders to assess readiness for coordinated response to combat contingencies in the Western ODA.

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