New Delhi, 22 July (Hindustan Times). Navy Chief Admiral R. Hari Kumar is currently on an official visit to Vietnam. He will hand over indigenously built missile corvette INS Kirpan gifted by India to the Vietnam People’s Navy. Admiral Kumar will also visit the Navy Headquarters at Hai Phong for bilateral talks with Vice Admiral Tran Thanh Nghiem, CINC of the Vietnam People’s Navy.
Defense Minister Rajnath Singh had announced the gifting of the missile corvettes after bilateral talks with the visiting Vietnamese National Defense Minister General Phan Van Gang on June 19. It is equipped with medium and close range guns, launchers and surface-to-surface missiles. It is capable of performing a variety of roles in surface warfare, coastal and offshore patrolling, coastal security, anti-piracy and more. INS Kirpan, an indigenously built Khukri class missile corvette, was commissioned into the Indian Navy on January 12, 1991 and rendered 32 years of illustrious service to the nation.
INS Kirpan, an indigenously built missile corvette gifted to Vietnam, embarked on its final voyage under the Indian tricolor to Vietnam from Naval Dockyard Visakhapatnam on 28 June. The Indian Navy flag was lowered from the missile corvette before its departure. The ship was bid farewell to the officers and personnel at a formal ceremony led by Vice Admiral Sanjay Vatsayan, Chief of Staff, Eastern Naval Command. Now this missile corvette has reached Cam Ranh, Vietnam on 08 July, which was presided over by Navy Chief Admiral R.K. Hari Kumar will do.
The gift of indigenously built in-service missile corvette INS Kirpan to the Vietnam People’s Navy reflects India’s commitment to assist like-minded partners and is in line with the Government of India’s policies of ‘Act East’ and ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR)’. This is the first time India has gifted a fully operational Corvette to a friendly foreign country. The warship INS Kirpan, gifted to Vietnam, is the third ship of the Khukri class of missile corvettes and was built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers.
Admiral R Hari Kumar will also visit the Vietnam People’s Navy Headquarters at Hai Phong for bilateral talks with Vice Admiral Tran Thanh Nghiem, CINC of the Vietnam People’s Navy and call on the Minister of National Defense of Vietnam. The CNS visit marks the high level of bilateral defense commitments between the Indian and Vietnamese Navies as well as recognition of India’s ‘ASEAN Centrality’ to the region. The transfer of INS Kirpan to Vietnam is reflective of India’s vision of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ and ‘Security and Growth for All in the Region’.