Karwar: Parrikar felicitates fishermen who saved pilot

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Karwar Sep 9 (IANS) Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Thursday felicitated fishermen who were instrumental in saving the pilot of a Dornier surveillance aircraft that crashed in the Arabian sea in March.

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The aircraft of the Indian Navy with three personnel aboard crashed into the Arabian Sea off the coast of Goa on March 24.

Commander Nikhil Joshi, the pilot of the aircraft and the lone survivor, was picked up by a passing fishing boat from a fishing hamlet off Karwar and transferred to a naval Fast Interceptor Craft.

“The lone survivor of the unfortunate accident is alive today because of the alacrity and the timely help extended by the fishermen community that night,” an official statement said.

The bodies of Lt. Abhinav Nagori, the co-pilot and Lt. Kiran Shekhawat, the flight observer, were later located inside the submerged fuselage of the aircraft.

Defence minister commissions new naval establishment at Karwar

Karwar Sep 9 (IANS) Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Wednesday commissioned INS Vajrakosh, the latest establishment of the Indian Navy at Karwar in Karnataka.

It is poised to be the Indian Navy’s premier base on the western seaboard, and the base for some vital naval assets.

“Naval units operating out of Karwar are required to be equipped with specialised armaments and missiles. These sophisticated missiles and ammunition require special storage facility and specialised servicing facilities,” said an official statement.

“The commissioning of INS Vajrakosh, the third naval establishment commissioned in Karwar, will allow the Indian Navy to further bolster the offensive and defensive capabilities of its platforms,” the statement said.

On the occasion, Parrikar emphasised the importance of a strong and modern navy for a maritime nation like India.

“Navy helps in maintaining peaceful, stable and orderly environment for socio economic growth and national development,” he said.

The minister exhorted the crew to ensure that the missiles in Vajrakosh “remain ever ready for operational deployment”.

Indian Navy chief Admiral R.K. Dhowan noted that Karwar was poised to emerge as the navy’s most significant base on the western seaboard in the near future.

“This naval establishment has some of the most significant naval assets already in service or being inducted. With the ongoing expansion of the Indian Navy, there has been increase in the number of ships, submarines and aircraft equipped with specialised armament and missiles,” said the navy chief.

“These need to be stowed and maintained in the best possible manner throughout their service life,” he said.

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