Defence Current Affairs 2017

Recent Current Affairs of 2017, 2016 related to India’s Defence, Indian Armed Forces, Defence Production, Defence Acquisition and related matters.

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Government approves Phase II of coastal surveillance project

The Union Defence Ministry has given its nod to the Phase II of coastal surveillance project to expand the coastal radar surveillance network. It will strengthen surveillance of over 7,500-km coastline of the country.

The decision was taken by the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), chaired by Union Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar. It also approved proposal of setting up of a shore-based intermediate engine repair facility for the Indian Navy’s MiG-29K fighters at the Naval yard in Goa.

Phase II of coastal surveillance project
  • Phase II of coastal surveillance project involves setting up 38 additional radars aimed to give gap less electronic surveillance of Indian coastline.
  • The project will be executed by Indian companies and Bengaluru based Bharat Electronics Ltd will be the lead integrator for the various works.
  • Under it four mobile surveillance stations will be also set up and will be integrated with two vessel traffic management systems (VTMS) in Kutch and Khambat in Gujarat.
Background

The Central government had decided to set up a chain of static sensors to fill gaps in coastal surveillance and keep track of boats entering Indian territorial waters aftermath of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks in which terrorists used a fishing boat to enter the city. Under Phase I of the surveillance project, a chain of 46 coastal surveillance radars and electro-optic sensors were set up, including 36 in the mainland, 6 in the Lakshadweep islands and 4 in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. Besides, India is also setting up similar radar stations in friendly Indian Ocean littoral nations.

Defence Acquisition Council (DAC): It is an apex body of Union Defence Ministry for clearing defence procurement proposals forwarded by the Indian Army, Navy and Air Force.

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Indian Coast Guard Ship ICGS AYUSH commissioned

Indian Coast Guard Ship ICGS AYUSH was commissioned at Kochi, Kerala by Vice Admiral AR Karwe, Flag Officer Commanding-in- Chief, Southern Naval Command.

ICGS AYUSH is the 20th and the last in the series of 20 Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs) built by Cochin Shipyard Ltd.

Key Facts
  • ICGS AYUSH is fitted with state-of- the-art navigational and communication equipment including Integrated Bridge System (IBS) and Machinery Control System (MCS).
  • The ship is capable of undertaking multifarious tasks such as surveillance, interdiction, search and rescue, anti-smuggling and medical evacuation.
  • It will also play a secondary role of providing a communication link and escort coastal conveys in times of war.
  • The ship will be based at Krisnapatnam (Andhra Pradesh), under the administrative and operational control of Commander, Coast Guard Region.
  • FPVs are intended to help secure Indian waters by patrolling within the Exclusive Economic Zone and help in fisheries protection.

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Indian Navy’s INSV Tarini inducted

Indian Navy’s second ocean-going sailboat INSV Tarini was inducted at the INS Mandovi Boat Pool on Saturday in Goa.

INSV Tarini is a sloop built by Divar-based Aquarius Shipyard.  It is slated to be the platform for the Indian Navy’s first Indian all-women circumnavigation of the globe expedition.

Key Facts
  • INSV (Indian Naval Sailing Vessel) Tarini has been built to a stock design called called Tonga 56 by Van de Stadt, the Netherlands.
  • It carries a suite of six sails, including a main sail, head sails (Genoa and stay sails), downwind sails and storm sail.
  • Its mast is 25 metres and has been custom-built by M/s Southern Spars, Cape Town (South Africa), for sailing in extreme conditions.
  • It has Raymarine navigation suite and an array of satellite communication systems on board through which contact can be made from anywhere.
  • INSV Tarini’s predecessor INSV Mhadei learning experiences have been incorporated into it. The INSV Mhadei has sailed over 1,15,000 nautical miles in the past eight years.
  • It includes voyages like the first Indian solo globe circumnavigation undertaken by Dilip Donde in 2009 and the first solo, non-stop unassisted circumnavigation undertaken by Abhilash Tomy in 2013.
Naming of INSV Tarini

INSV Tarini has been named after the Tara-Tarini hill shrine located on the Kumari hills on the banks of Rushikulya river in Ganjam district of Odisha. In Sanskrit, the word Tarini means both boat and saviour. Tara-Tarini was the traditional patron deity for sailors and merchants of ancient Odisha, who is worshipped for safety and success at sea. This holy shrine is linked to the worship of Tara, the primordial deity of the Mahayana Buddhism. Later, it became a major shrine of Tantra. In the sanctorum of Tara Tarini temple, a small idol in meditating posture is found hinting its ancient Buddhist links.  ‘Sadhabas’, the ancient sea faring merchants from Odisha used to rever Tara-Tarini and worshipped at this shrine before starting their sea voyage.

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