Air Marshal Muhammad Enamul Bari, Chief of Air Staff, Bangladesh Air Force on a goodwill visit to India, called on Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee and Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha at Air Headquarters, New Delhi on 18 September 2014. On a formal request from the Bangladesh Air Force and in view of the historic ties, the IAF gifted one Dakota aircraft from the IAF museum to the Bangladesh Air Force during this visit. The aircraft was handed over by Air Marshal SS Soman, AOC-in-C, Western Air Command to Air Marshal Bari, Chief of Bangladesh in a befitting ceremony at Air Force Station Palam. There is much nostalgia about Dakota aircraft, which played a sterling role in IAF’s history as one of the pioneers of its transport fleet. This aircraft played a crucial role in the first India- Pakistan 1947-48 war by timely transporting Indian Army along with equipment including vehicles. It was the first transport aircraft that landed at heights of 11500 ft in Leh by then Wg Cdr “Baba” Mehar Singh. The aircraft was used for transporting troops in Srinagar. During the third India-Pakistan war in December 1971 again the Dakota played a pivotal role in the liberation of Bangladesh during the famous Tangail drop, the biggest and most ambitious air drop operation since World War II and subsequently in formation of Bangladesh Air Force.
GOLDEN JUBILEE CELEBRATION OF NAVAL DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION
An international seminar “Future trends and Opportunities in Warship Design and Construction” was held ON 25 September 2014, at DRDO Bhawan, New Delhi to commemorate the Golden Jubilee of Indigenous Warship Design and Construction. Navy Chief Admiral RK Dhowan, was the chief guest for the seminar attended by Defence Secretary RK Mathur, Flag Officers, Defence Ministry officials, heads of shipyards, dignitaries from PSUs, classification societies and luminaries from the ship building industry. Realising the need for development of indigenous capabilities, the Corps of Naval Constructors was formed in
1954, followed by setting up of a Central Design Office (CDO) in 1964. In 1970, this Central Design Office emerged as the Directorate of Naval Design (DND) and it formed the bedrock of all warship design activities in the country. DND has been a
cornerstone for the construction of 119 warships and submarines of various types and sizes in our shipyards as of date. Recently commissioned warships INS Kolkata, INS Kamorta in Aug 2014 and INS Sumitra in early September 2014 aptly demonstrate the immense potential of the country in indigenous warship design and building capability. 41 ships and submarines are under construction at various public and private shipyards within the country. Admiral Dhowan urged ship designers to work in synergy with all shipyards and domain experts and absorb the best practices available the world-over to ensure that our future warships meet best global standards in quality, timelines and cost.
TEENAGE DUO GIVE INDIA HISTORIC SAILING BRONZE
Varsha Gautham (16 years) and Aishwarya Neduchezian (18 years), scripted a piece of sailing history in the Incheon Asian Games by becoming the first ever Indian women to win a Bronze Medal for India at the 17th edition of the Asian Games on 30th Sep 2014. Varsha Gautham also made it to the history books by becoming the youngest athlete from India amongst the medal winners at this Asian Games. Thanking Admiral RK Dhowan, Chief of the Naval Staff and President, Yachting Association of India (YAI), Varsha and Aishwarya said that it was the leading role played by Indian Navy in promoting yachting in India that had made it possible for them to achieve this feat. Varsha recalled the opportunity she had to visit INS Tarangini, the first sail training ship of the Indian Navy in 2005 during its visit to Chennai that led to her taking up the sport. The YAI is also officially recognised by the Indian Olympic Association and the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India as the governing authority for sailing, windsurfing, motor boating, powerboat racing and personal watercraft, at sea and on inland waters in India. There are currently 55 clubs affiliated to the YAI, spread over the various parts of the country.
FLOOD RELIEF REVIEWED BY CHAIRMAN, COSC
The Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) and Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha visited the flood affected areas of Jammu and Kashmir, for an aerial survey of both north and south Kashmir and to take stock of the relief and rescue operations being carried out by the Armed Forces. He was extremely satisfied with the team work and joint operations being carried out by Army, Navy, Air Force and NDRF and trying their best to restore conditions back to normalcy. During his visit, the Air Chief was received by Air Commodore B Balachandran, Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Air Force Station, Srinagar, from where the majority of relief operations were launched and carried out. He then met Lieutenant General Subrata Saha, GOC, 15 Corps at Badami Bagh Cantt. He also called on Chief Minister Omar Abdullah at Hari Niwas and Governor NN Vohra at Raj Bhawan. He interacted with the station personnel of Srinagar and Awantipur and expressed praise for every air warrior and the support services for doing their bit during one of the biggest and most challenging helicopter and transport operations carried out in the most daunting conditions of difficult terrain, inclement weather, flying at a varying altitude and unprecedented bird activity. He appreciated the outstanding effort put in by all personnel of IAF carrying out day and night operations to offload and disperse relief material. The Air Chief also visited the No. 3 Rapid Air Medical Team (RAMT) and found it well established and equipped with Mobile Critical Care Centre for flood victims. He interacted with the Commandos who were involved in these operations and had rescued a number of people.
BRO ANNUAL CHIEF ENGINEERS’ CONFERENCE 2014
Border Roads Organisation (BRO) organised its Annual Chief Engineers’ and Equipment Management Conference 2014 at GREF Centre, Pune from 23 to 26 September 2014. Director General Border Roads and its eighteen Chief Engineers heading various projects attended the conference to take stock of ongoing works, chart out future course of action for the organization and issues of organizational interests were discussed during the conference. Certain firms were invited to give presentations on latest technologies which can be implemented in BRO. Playing a vital role in meeting the strategic and operational infrastructural requirements of the Army, BRO has also made a significant contribution to the socio-economic development especially of the border areas and India’s North Eastern region. BRO is presently undertaking construction of 23,410 Km of roads and 30,982 metres of bridges, besides maintaining a network of 25,700 Km of roads and bridges.
BRO has also made its foray into the field of tunneling to meet the strategic requirements of the armed forces. Construction of the 8.8 km Rohtang Tunnel in the State of Himachal Pradesh is under progress, of which 4.4 Km of the tunnel has already been completed. Feasibility study of Zojila and Z-Morh tunnel has been completed and construction is likely to commence next year. A 592 metres long cable stayed bridge under construction on River Ravi at Basohli, will be first of its kind in Northern India and will enhance connectivity between Punjab and Jammu & Kashmir