Naval manoeuvres in a rough monsoon sea, cross deck flying and crew exchange were some of the highlights of the trilateral ‘Malabar’ naval exercise between India, the US and Japan in the Bay of Bengal.
The sea phase of the exercise between the Indian Navy, Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force and US Navy saw the ships of the three navies participating in the naval manouvres at sea.
On July 15, the exercise also saw cross deck flying operations, wherein a helicopter from USS Shoup landed onboard INS Sahyadri and JN Sazanami. The helicopter from JN Sazanami undertook flying operations from INS Sahyadri and USS Shoup.
Despite the rough seas and challenging weather, the ships and aircraft of the three navies carried out their assigned tasks in a cohesive manner.
On July 16, INS Jyoti, a tanker ship undertook the manoeuvre Replenishment at Sea with US Navy ship Shoup and Japanese navy ship Sazanami. During this operation, INS Jyoti passed the oil hoses to the US and Japanese Navies to exercise transferof fuel.
INS Vikramaditya, India’s aircraft carrier participating in the exercise, launched MiG 29K fighter aircraft to undertake combat missions against the US Navy F-18 fighter aircraft launched from USS Nimitz, the USN aircraft carrier, for combined crew training.
Sixteen ships and more than 95 aircraft are participating from the three countries in the exercise that comes amid reports of Chinese warships in the Indian Ocean Region in the name of anti-piracy operations, and Beijing’s aggressive posturing in the South China .