INS Sudarshini returns after Asean tour

Our Bureau Kochi | Updated on March 25, 2013 Published on March 25, 2013

After an epic voyage of over six months to South East Asia, INS Sudarshini – Indian Navy’s sail training ship – returned to Kochi on Monday.

The ship, which set sail from Kochi on September 15, visited nine countries in South East Asia on a commemorative voyage celebrating India’s warm ties with the Asean countries.

It traversed over 13,700 nautical miles with 121 days at sea during the voyage, which was a collaborative venture of Defence Ministry and External Affairs Ministry.

Defence Minister A.K. Antony was at the pier at the Naval Base here to receive the ship.

Antony said on the occasion that neighbours need not share borders but common goals and interests. Noting that India and Asean countries share a common heritage through 2,000 years of history, he said that the voyage is a reaffirmation of India’s commitment to strengthening economic, cultural and diplomatic bonds with those countries.

The Defence Minister praised the Commanding Officer and crew of INS Sudarshini as they became ambassadors of the country in all the ports they visited.

Vice-Admiral Satish Soni, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Southern Naval Command said the vagaries of weather in South China Sea have turned the cadets onboard into men.

The ship also embarked international trainees and officers on different legs of the voyage, cementing the warm ties with the navies in that region.   

Various ‘marker’ events – commercial and cultural – were hosted by India at the 12 ports of call.

Commander N. Shyamsunder and the crew of ship hosted thousands of visitors, including school children, in all ports of call.  

The ports of call included Padang, Bali and Manado in Indonesia, Port Muara in Brunei, Cebu and Manila in Philippines, Da Nang in Vietnam, Sihanoukville in Cambodia, Bangkok and Phuket in Thailand, Singapore, Port Klang in Malaysia, and Sittwe in Myanmar.

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Published on March 25, 2013
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