ENC mulls Naval base at Kakinada

To effectively discharge its duty in protecting the offshore assets in the Krishna Godavari Basin the Indian Navy is mulling a base at Kakinada which would provide logistic and other operational support to its ships.

Post Mumbai terror attack the protection of offshore assets has become very important and the 84th Indian Naval Immediate Support Vessel Squadron has been established with its base in Visakhapatnam. The Squadron has six lightly armed surface craft capable of operating at high seas as well as in coastal waters. The primary role of these craft is to strengthen the security of the Offshore Development Areas in Krishna Godavari Basin.

By turn two of the six vessels would be on duty, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command Vice Admiral Satish Soni said. Since these vessels have low endurance they would have to return to base in Visakhapatnam, which also reduces the effective patrol time.

The Navy is studying different options for providing logistic support to these vessels to ensure that the ISVs can be on patrol for longer stretches. Further, the Navy can access the shore-based support at Kakinada by paying a hefty fee to the private port operator Kakinada Sea Ports Ltd.

“We have proposed a shore-based establishment at Kakinada that would enhance our operational effectiveness in that region and also address the issues of security,” Vice Admiral Satish Soni said.

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