The four-day Naval Commanders' Conference concluded on October 27, 2017 where the senior leadership of Navy reviewed major operations, training and administrative activities undertaken in the last six months.
During the Conference, the Hon'ble Raksha Mantri addressed and interacted with the Naval Commanders, which was also attended by senior MoD officials. The Hon'ble RM reviewed the combat readiness of the Navy, pace of modernisation and progress of various acquisition and infrastructure related cases. She complimented the IN for maintaining a high operational tempo, ensuring the maritime security of the country and sustained efforts in support of the 'Make in India' and 'Digital India' initiatives of the Government. The Hon'ble RM brought out that it was a matter of pride that all 34 warships presently under construction were being built indigenously. She also complimented the Navy on the successful conduct of tri-lateral exercise 'MALABAR 17' and informed the Commanders that during the recently concluded ADMM Plus, keen interest was evinced by various ASEAN nations in exercising with the Indian Navy, which spoke highly of the IN's professional standing and competence.
Chairing the conference, Admiral Sunil Lanba, the CNS, addressed the Naval Commanders and stressed focus on four key areas; 'Combat Capability and Role- Worthiness', 'Ensuring Primacy of Core Professional Tasks', 'Develop a Motivated, Trained and Committed Team' and 'Increase Familiarity and Comfort in IN's Maritime Areas Of Interest'. The CNS shared his views on the current security scenario and emphasized the need for the IN to remain outcome oriented in all endeavours, both at sea and ashore.
The Commanders also had an opportunity to interact with the Chiefs of the Indian Army and IAF. The Service Chiefs brought out the complexities in current security situation where the spectrum of threats ranged from possible conventional conflict to inimical actions by state and non-state sponsored terrorists/ elements and natural disasters and calamities. The Service Chiefs elaborated their vision and the path being charted by the respective Services towards operational readiness and actions in progress towards improving tri-Service cooperation.
Shri Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog also interacted with the Commanders and gave his perspective on 'Make in India' with specific reference to building a vibrant defence industrial base, which would be pivotal in spurring the manufacturing sector growth and make India an export oriented economy. Sh. Amitabh Kant also stressed the importance of demand aggregation digitising legacy processes.
As part of the annual theme, the Commanders brainstormed to fine tune the execution of 'mission based deployment' involving ships, aircraft and submarines beyond the immediate neighbourhood for providing sustained presence in the IOR. Critical enablers such as refits/ maintenance philosophy, op-logistics and HR measures for sustained operational effectiveness were also discussed in detail. Approval of a new Transition cycle for ships from Maintenance periods to Operational Deployments that allowed for a focussed and gradual transition of ships from periods of maintenance layoffs to full scale operations was one of the milestones achieved during the conference. The Commanders resolved to focus efforts on the Navy's ability to deploy and sustain in tandem with the new Mission-based deployment concept, which would result in greater presence and visibility in IOR.
In his closing address, the CNS emphasised the need to optimise efforts, exploit the potential of each and every personnel, encourage innovative thinking and harness available technology. The CNS urged the Commanders to put in concerted efforts to realise the 'way ahead' arrived at during the deliberations on various agenda points and exhorted the Commanders to keep an unwavering focus on combat readiness at all times.