Today is the 49th Navy Day, where India pays homage to the bravehearts of the Indian Navy, who laid down their lives for the nation and celebrates the Men in White who serve the nation selflessly in the line of duty. 4th December is celebrated as Navy Day to also celebrate the victory over Pakistan in 1971. On 4 December, Indian Navy had dispatched 3 missile boats – Nirghat, Nipat and Veer to the Karachi port in response to a Pakistan offensive on the Indian airbases on 3 December. This was called Operation Trident. In the stealth attack, the 3 Indian Navy boats sank Pakistani Minesweeper Muhafiz, Destroyer Khaiber and Challenger MV Venus.
NAVY TELEFILM 2020
This audacious attack not only sank the Pakistan vessels but also set alight a fuel storage facility along with blocking the Karachi port. On the eastern end, a task force led by aircraft carrier INS Vikrant in the Bay of Bengal, blocked seaward egress from East Pakistan. This also expedited the Pakistani surrender. There were no casualties on the Indian side though.
The theme for Indian Navy Day 2020 is "Indian Navy Combat Ready, Credible and Cohesive". This year the nation celebrates the 50th year of this victory over Pakistan.
Over the last many decades, the Indian Navy has been involved in many operations, ranging from border security to rescue. This year, during the COVID pandemic, the Indian Navy launched Operation Samudra Setu, to rescue Indian citizens stranded abroad.
MESSAGE BY THE CHIEF OF NAVAL STAFF
Indian Navy after Independence
After India attained Independence, the Royal Indian Navy consisted of 32 ageing vessels suitable only for coastal patrol, along with 11,000 officers and men. The senior officers were drawn from the Royal Navy, with R Adm ITS Hall, CIE, being the first Post-independence Commander-in-Chief. The prefix 'Royal' was dropped on 26 January 1950 with India being constituted as a Republic. The first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Navy was Adm Sir Edward Parry, KCB, who handed over to Adm Sir Mark Pizey, KBE, CB, DSO in 1951. Adm Pizey also became the first Chief of the Naval Staff in 1955, and was succeeded by V Adm SH Carlill, CB, DSO. On 22 April 1958 V Adm RD Katari assumed office as the first Indian Chief of the Naval Staff.