New Delhi, Sept.26 : The Indian Navy’s INS Trikand entered the French port of Toulon today for a three day visit.
The INS Trikand, commanded by Captain Vinay Kalia, is a state-of-the-art warship of the Indian Navy equipped with a versatile range of weapons and sensors capable of addressing threats in all the three dimensions – air, surface and sub-surface.
The visiting ship is part of the Indian Navy’s Western Fleet and is under the operational command of the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, with its Headquarters at Mumbai.
The ship will engage extensively with the French Navy during its stay in the country. Apart from professional interaction, a number of sports and social engagements are also planned, an Indian Navy statement said.
The Indian and French Navies routinely undertake bilateral maritime exercises known as Varuna, which is the fulcrum of maritime engagement between the two navies.
The last edition of Varuna was conducted off Goa this year with the participation of the French aircraft carrier, Charles De Gaulle.
India and France are also collaborating in the Scorpene submarine programme, under which six submarines are being built in India with French assistance.
Indian naval assets are regularly deployed as part of the Indian Navy’s mission of building ‘Bridges of Friendship’ and strengthening international cooperation with friendly countries as well as to address maritime concerns of the region including piracy in the Gulf of Aden.
Relations between India and France have traditionally been close and friendly. With the establishment of the strategic partnership in 1998, there has been significant progress in all areas of bilateral co-operation including defence, nuclear energy and space. (ANI)