General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Army Staff visited the NCC Republic Day Camp 2018 at the DGNCC Camp on January 16, 2018. On arrival, he was received by the DGNCC, Lieutenant General BS Sahrawat, SM.
Contingents of all the three wings namely Army, Navy and Air Force presented an impressive "Guard of Honour" to the Chief of Army Staff on his arrival. NCC cadets thereafter presented a fine band display. The COAS also visited the 'Flag Area' prepared by the NCC cadets depicting various social awareness themes and cultural activities. The cadets briefed him in detail about their respective State Directorate themes.
The versatile NCC cadets then presented a spectacular Cultural Programme in the NCC auditorium comprising group dances and ballet showcasing the rich cultural heritage of our Nation.
The COAS congratulated the 'Guard of Honour' for the impeccable turnout and drill and the bands for their excellent display. The COAS expressed his happiness that many ex NCC Cadets hold very high offices in the Government and Armed Forces and urged the cadets to put their heart and mind in everything they undertake and become role model for the youth of our nation.
Admiral Sunil Lanba, ADC, Chief of the Naval Staff visited the DG NCC Republic Day Camp at Cariappa Parade Ground, Delhi Cantt and reviewed an impressive 'Guard of Honour' by the smartly turned out Cadets drawn from all the three Wings of NCC i.e. Army, Navy and Air Force. This was followed by a brilliant band display by the cadets. The CNS also inspected the well laid out flag areas prepared by the NCC cadets from all the 17 NCC Directorates depicting various Social Awareness themes.
Later, the Admiral witnessed a sterling cultural performance put up by the multi talented Cadets depicting the rich Indian Culture.
Speaking on the occasion, the Chief of the Naval Staff complimented the Cadets for presenting an impressive 'Guard of Honour', smart turnout and drill of the Cadets. He stated that NCC is a premier youth organisation single-mindedly engaged in grooming Nation's Future leaders & empowering them to don the mantle of country's leadership as well as excel in all walks of life. He noted the noble contribution of NCC Cadets towards Nation Building and their indomitable spirit and empathy during calamities. He also appreciated efforts in pursuit of naval activities to include long duration and high risk sailing. The CNS also urged the NCC Cadets to join the armed forces and serve the motherland.
Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, ADC, Chief of the Air Staff visited the NCC Republic Day Camp 2018 at Delhi Cantt on January 12, 2018. On arrival, the Air Chief was received by the DG NCC, Lt Gen BS Sahrawat, SM. Chief of the Air Staff reviewed a 'Guard of Honour' presented by the smartly turned out cadets from all the three wings of the NCC i.e. Army, Navy and Air Force. This was followed by a brilliant Band display by the cadets.
CAS also inspected the well laid out flag area prepared by the cadets from all 17 NCC Directorates, depicting various Social Awareness themes. He was given a crisp brief by the cadets on their respective models. Thereafter, CAS visited 'Hall of Fame', a proud possession of NCC with a display of rich archival collection, which showcases alumni photographs, models, motivational material and other achievements of NCC. Later, CAS along with other distinguished guests, witnessed a spectacular Cultural Programme by the talented cadets in the NCC auditorium.
Congratulating the cadets for their captivating cultural programme and soldierly alertness on parade, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa lauded the stellar role played by this premier organization in shaping our country's youth through its motto of 'Unity and Discipline' enabling them to shoulder the responsibilities of building a strong nation. He also assured NCC of the IAF's continued support, in the use of microlight aircraft as a training aid for flying by NCC cadets.
pix: Naresh Kumar & Rajesh Kumar Khanande
To commemorate the 42nd Raising Day of Indian Coast Guard, a Quiz Competition was conducted on board Indian Coast Guard Ship Sagar under the aegis of Coast Guard Wives Welfare Association(East) with an aim to spread awareness amongst the school children about Indian Coast Guard and to motivate them to join Indian Coast Guard.
Twenty three teams from sixteen schools in the city with students from class IX to XII participated in the Quiz competition. Mr TK Mohan of Indian Railways, the Quiz master for the event, conducted the quiz in two rounds of preliminary and finals.
Six teams were selected for an exciting and challenging final round. Army Public School, Nandambakkam was adjudged the proud winner of the competition. SBOA School, Anna Nagar and Kendriya Vidyalaya, Anna Nagar were the first and second runners up. The winners were awarded with trophy and gift hampers by the Chief Guest, Mrs. Nidhi Bargotra, President, Tatrakshika (East).
The uniqueness of the Indian Coast Guard Quiz is that it was conducted on board ship. In addition to general trivia the quiz also had a special round of questions focusing on Indian Coast Guard, maritime security, oceanic geography and ecology.
On January 6, 2018, forty three Indian officers including seven Coast Guard officers joined the 'Engineering Branch' of Indian Navy on successful completion of 79 weeks Marine Engineering Specialisation Course (MESC). The Passing out Parade held on the occasion was reviewed by Vice Admiral DM Deshpande, Controller Warship Production and Acquisition, Integrated Headquarters, New Delhi.
INS Shivaji, the alma-mater of Marine Engineer Officers, is the premier training establishment nestled in Sahyadris at Lonavla. The institution has been the fountain head of engineering knowledge and imparts specialized training to officers and sailors of the branch. First batch of MESC commenced at INS Shivaji on January 2, 1961 and since then 83 batches have passed out from this establishment. The 84th batch of MESC consists of 36 officers of the Indian Navy and 7 officers of the Indian Coast Guard. The Passing out Parade marked the successful culmination of 79 weeks of training regimen, wherein rigorous academic curriculum ran simultaneously with a demanding afloat and outdoor training to ensure overall grooming of the officers. These officers are now poised to take on the challenges of their first appointment as Assistant/ Senior Engineer Officers onboard frontline warships.
The Chief Guest in his valedictory address congratulated the young passing out officers and the training staff at Shivaji for preparing them for a challenging career ahead. He urged the officers to continue their tryst with learning and adapt to the technological advancements to become thorough professionals. The Chief Guest exhorted the young engineer officers to lead by example and pursue excellence in every endeavor while maintaining the highest standards of the Navy. The Chief Guest also released the 75th edition of the Journal of Marine Engineering during the Valedictory function.
The Chief Guest awarded trophies to officers adjudged first in academics and overall order of merit. The 'Hammer' for best all-round Officer was awarded to SLt Amardeep Singh Jaswal. The DGCG rolling trophy for best all-round Coast Guard officer was awarded to Asst Cmdt Dhanasekar S. Vice Admiral Daya Shankar rolling trophy for best sportsman was awarded to Lt Sohrab Mohamed K. SLt Priya Ranjan and Lt Hirath Lal stood first and second respectively in Academics. The best project syndicate was awarded for project on 'Development of portable and wireless emergency SOS system for engine room watchkeeper'.
Government had acquired private land measuring 2,412 acres 15 guntas 7 anas, located in 13 vilages of Talukas Karwar and Ankola, Uttar Kannada District in Karnataka for the purpose of creating a naval base. At the time of acquisition of land from 1988 to 2000, a sum of Rs. 22.55 crore was paid to the ex-land owners towards compensation. Over and above this, as per extant law, Rs. 126 crore towards rehabilitation packages to the project affected families was also released to the State Government.
Some land owners who were not satisfied with quantum of compensation awarded by Special Land Acquisition Officer (SLAO), had filed references u/s 18 of Land Acquisition (LA) Act 1894, following which the Reference Courts awarded enhanced compensation at the rate of Rs. 4.60 lakh per acre, which was confirmed by the Supreme Court on September 13, 2012.
Accordingly, in compliance of the court orders, Ministry of Defence (MoD) from 2004-05 to till date has already paid Rs. 377.12 crore as enhanced compensation in respect of 997 such cases, of which Rs. 163.03 crore was released during 2017-18 and Rs. 214.09 crore was released earlier up to 2016-17. This amount has already been deposited with SLAO, Karwar for onward disbursal to land owners through the Execution Courts.
Payment for 12 clear cases under Section 18 of LA Act, 1894 is expected to be made by January 31, 2018 by the MoD with SLAO, Karwar.
As regards applications filed by ex-land owners u/s 28-A of LA Act, another Rs. 10.51 crore has been deposited by the Ministry with SLAO on January 10, 2018. Documentation in respect of remaining applications has also been fast tracked to enable early release of compensation amount. In these remaining cases, subject to the competent authorities giving clearance at the State level, the Ministry will be clearing these proposals by February 2018.
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As a major boost to 'Make in India' in Defence, the Defence Acquisition Council, chaired by Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman, in its meeting on January 16, 2018, cleared a simplified 'Make-II' procedure which will enable greater participation of industry in acquisition of defence equipment. This process will greatly help import substitution and promote innovative solutions. This simplified 'Make-II' procedure will amend the existing 'Make Procedure' in Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP)-2016.
The revised procedure has been finalized after a series of consultations held with industry. The salient features of the new 'Make-II' procedure include the following:
• The industry can suggest projects, especially among those items which are currently being imported. Start-ups or individuals can also suggest proposals. Service Headquarters will also list out a series of projects which can be undertaken as 'Make-II' projects under the new procedure.
• The potential 'Make-II' projects will be approved by a collegiate comprising of DRDO, HQ (IDS), Department of Defence under a committee chaired by Secretary (Defence Production). Based on the in-principle approval agreed by this committee, the projects will be hosted on Ministry of Defence/Department of Defence Production's website inviting industry to participate.
• There will be no limit to the number of industry who may respond to the EoI for development of the prototype subject to meeting the minimum qualification criteria. The design and development time of 12 to 30 weeks is granted to industry to offer the prototypes.
• There is no limit to the number of industry players who may show interest and offer prototype.
• After this period, a commercial RFP will be issued. Once the RFP is issued, it shall not be retracted. The industry who wins the bid, is assured of an order.
• Service Headquarter (SHQ) will constitute a Project Facilitation Team for facilitating the process under this procedure.
• The case will be progressed even if there is single entity offering an innovative solution.
• The industry who develops the product will retain the title and ownership and all other rights in intellectual property. However, for some specified reasons like National Security, Government shall have 'March-in' rights.
• Normally, there shall be no negotiations by Contract Negotiation Committee (CNC) in multi-vendor contracts.
• 'Make-II' procedure reduces the total time from in-principle approval to placing of order by 50 percent. The estimated time to finish the whole process has come down to 69 to 103 weeks.
• Projects involving developmental cost of less than three crores will be reserved for MSME.
Long Range Surface-to-Surface Ballistic Missile, Agni-5, was successfully flight tested for its full range on January 18, 2018 from Dr Abdul Kalam Island, Odisha. This was the fifth test of the Missile and the third consecutive one from a canister on a road mobile launcher. All the five missions have been successful.
The flight performance of the missile was tracked and monitored by radars, range stations and tracking systems all through the mission. All objectives of the mission have been successfully met. This successful test of Agni-5 reaffirms the country's indigenous missile capabilities and further strengthens our credible deterrence.
The launch operations were led by Project Director, Agni-5, Shri G Ramaguru and Programme Director, Agni, Shri MRM Babu. Scientific Adviser to Raksha Mantri and Director General, Missiles and Strategic Systems Dr G Satheesh Reddy witnessed the launch. Directors of Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) Labs namely ASL, DRDL, ITR, RCI and TBRL reviewed the entire launch operations. Senior officials from the Armed Forces were present on the occasion. Chairman DRDO & Secretary DDR&D Dr S Christopher congratulated Agni-5 team and said that the fifth consecutive successful flight test of Agni-5 is a major boost to country's defence capabilities.
Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman while inaugurating the Defence Industry Development Meet at Chennai, shared her happiness on the successful flight test of Agni-5. She congratulated DRDO on this successful feat and also lauded the industries who contributed to the manufacture of indigenous technologies that went into the making of the missile.
14th Battalion Brigade of The Guards kick started its Golden Jubilee on January 12, 2018 with the ceremonial parade followed by release of first day cover.
Lt Gen Surinder Singh, Army Commander, Western Command and Colonel of the Brigade of the Guards reviewed the ceremonial parade. The parade consisted of the infantry marching contingent and BMP mounted contingent along with the light vehicle contingent, thereby displaying the might of a mechanized battalion in ever changing environment of warfare. Lt Gen Surinder Singh commended the Battalion for its glorious past and its contribution in wars & various operations in highest traditions of 'Brigade of The Guards' and 'Indian Army'. He complimented the present day flag bearers for their determination, fortitude & exhorted them to work for the izzat of the battalion. He also released the 'First Day Cover' of the battalion on the occasion. A large number of officers & veterans turned up to join the celebrations of the battalion including war veterans of 1971 war.
A large number of Veer Naris of the battalion including Mrs Balamdina Ekka wife of Late LNk Albert Ekka, PVC were also present during the ceremonial parade.
The battalion was raised on January 13, 1968. The battalion is the youngest 'Param Vir Chakra' Battalion of India Army, wherein LNk Albert Ekka was awarded the 'Param Vir Chakra' in Indo-Pak War in 1971. The battalion has participated in all the operations since its raising. The unit has been conferred with Eastern Army Commander's unit citation in 2016 as an acknowledgement of well deserved recognition for its tenure in Super High Altitude Area of North Sikkim.
About 350 school children from various schools in Kolkata and NCC cadets from the region had the opportunity to swing into the rhythm of Indian Navy Band which came from Visakhapatnam, the Eastern Naval Command, to perform in Kolkata. The Naval band performed under the shade of Lascar War Memorial, Hastings, the memorial which was built in honour of 896 lascars, who died fighting for the British Navy during the First World War.
The event was organized as part of the Navy Day Celebrations which is celebrated each year on December 4. The venue, aptly selected, gave the children an opportunity to have a closer look at the naval base and interact with the men in uniform. The young minds enthusiastically witnessed the captivating performance of Naval band under the baton of Commander Satish K Champion. The Band, whose origin dates back to 1945, played different forms and textures of music for the children.
To commemorate the auspicious occasion of 'Armed Forces Veterans Day' on January 14, 2018, the General Officer Commanding, Pashchim UP Sub Area dedicated the twin establishments of 'Veterans Node' and SBI Veterans Facilitation Centre and E-lobby in the service of Veterans of Meerut.
The Veterans Node is a consolidated facilitation centre comprising the ESM Helpline, Pension Anomalies Settlement Cell, Army Welfare Placement Cell, ECHS Cards Cell, Veterans Registration Portal and Jeevan Praman Patra Registration Counter amongst other services being provided to Veterans centrally under one roof.
The 'SBI Veterans Facilitation Centre' is a state of the art module co-located with Veterans Node and Offers facilities of an ATM, a Cash Deposition Kiosk and a Pass Book Updation Kiosk. SBI Officials are available on site to assist Veterans in resolving their pension/ entitlement issues on a fast track basis.
In order to strengthen the existing India-Sri Lanka bilateral ties, a nine-member Sri Lankan Tri- Services delegation, headed by Mr Kapila Waidyaratne, PC, Secretary of Defence made a two-day visit to the Southern Naval Command, (SNC) Kochi from January 11, 2018.
During their stay at Kochi, the Sri Lankan delegation had discussions with Vice Admiral AR Karve, AVSM, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, SNC on matters of mutual interest to both countries, including aspects related to training conducted by Indian Navy for Sri Lankan trainees at various units of SNC. The Sri Lankan delegation also visited Water Survival Training Facility (a facility which trains the aviation crew in survival techniques in case of an aircraft crash at sea), Flight and Tactical Simulator (helicopter flight training simulator), Ship Handling Simulator and Joint Operations Centre, Kochi.
Naval cooperation with Sri Lanka covers a wide spectrum of activities, ranging from training to operations, which includes Capability Building and Capacity Augmentation, coordinated patrolling along the common maritime border, as well as port calls.
The visit was undertaken on the sidelines of the 5th India Sri Lanka Annual Defence Dialogue held at New Delhi from January 8-9, 2018. The delegation departed Kochi on January 12, 2018 for Colombo.