KOCHI: Spectators were treated to a breathtaking display of military precision, daredevil skills and daring armed operations at the Navy’s Operations Demonstration (Op Demo) at Rajendra Maidan on Sunday evening. The event, organised as part of the Navy week celebrations, was hosted by Vice-Admiral Anil Kumar Chawla, Flag-Officer Commanding in Chief Southern Naval Command.
The demonstration began with marine commandos delivering the programme schedule to Governor P Sathasivam, who was the chief guest for the event. The two-hour-long demonstration included special operations by Marine Commandos, or MARCOS, from air and water; simulation of VBSS (visit, board, search and seizure) operations and helobatics by Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) and Chetak light helicopters. INS Ranvijay, one of the older destroyers of the Indian Navy, with its sleek silhouette provided the perfect backdrop to the entire event.
Hundreds of people thronged Subhash Park and Marine Drive to see the display in close proximity, with many even climbing on trees to get a better view. Children were awestruck by the display of Seaking helicopters on a moving warship and firing of weapons. Dressed in battle fatigues, the commandos merged into the landscape to attack the ‘enemies’. With pinpoint sniper-fire, they eliminated the attackers, taking full advantage of the elements of surprise and stealth.
A continuity drill performed by two contingents from INS Dronachrya stood out for its stunning and precise discipline and skills in weapon handling. The traditional hornpipe dance by the girl cadets of the sea cadet corps was an epitome of grace and elegance. The demonstration concluded with a ‘Beating Retreat,’ comprising inspiring martial music played by the Naval Band.SNC Chief of Staff Rear Admiral R J Nadkarni, Governer’s wife Saraswathi and Kochi Mayor Soumini Jain were also present.