MUMBAI: On his maiden visit to the Western Naval Command (WNC) after assuming office, Navy Chief Admiral R K Dhowan on Monday said that teamwork, better coordination and emphasis on training will top his priority list.
Dhowan said that the Navy was analysing the string of submarine mishaps in the WNC thoroughly. “We have placed reliable safety measures and are verifying whether all standard operating measures were followed. All assets are being professionally handled and safety measures were put in place even before the inquiry into the mishaps was over.”
He hailed the WNC as the most important command of the Navy. “They are carrying a great responsibility and have better assets and qualified staff. We have taken the operational efficiency seriously and have taken many steps in this regard. INS Sindhurakshak’s salvage process is going on.”
The Kilo-class submarine Sindhurakshak had sunk on August 14, 2013, after a powerful blast in its torpedo section, killing all 18 sailors on board.
Dhowan said that the Navy has come up with a maritime capability perspective plan. Under this plan, it has prepared a detailed list of its requirement of ships, submarines and weapons. “We are taking stock of our weapons and censors. I have full faith in the DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organisation),” he said.
The Navy Chief claimed that its communication satellite will help improve communication. He said that 44 ships and submarines were under construction and the nuclear submarine Chakra was ready for operations. However, he insisted that the men behind the machines were more important.
Dhowan, who superseded Vice Admiral Shekhar Sinha’s seniority, sought to end the controversy over his appointment. “I am a professional and I will carry out my duty professionally with integrity,” he asserted.