The first Bi-lateral maritime exercise between India and Japan ‘JIMEX 12’ (Japan India Maritime Exercise) will commence tomorrow, 09 June, off Tokyo. Units of the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF) participating are twodestroyers; one maritime patrol aircraft and a helicopter. Indian Naval units participating are INS Rana, INS Shivalik, INS Karmukh and INS Shakti. The four ships entered Tokyo on 05 Jun 12 after visiting Singapore, Vietnam, Philippines and Republic of Koreaenroute. The three day stay in Tokyo coincides with commemoration of 60 years of diplomatic relations between India and Japan.
The four ships of the Eastern Fleet of the Indian Navy, under the command of Rear Admiral P Ajit Kumar, Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet are on a sustained operational deployment to the South China Sea and North West Pacific. The two month long deployment which commenced in end May 2012enables Navy to Navy cooperation with the numerous navies across the region as well as demonstrates the Indian Navy’s operational reach. On completion of the exercise, the ships will be visiting Beijing, China and Port Kelang, Malaysia in mid-Jun 12.
During the deployment the ships participate in passage exercises with the respective Navies of countries visited. The focus of ‘Passage Exercises’ is primarily in the sphere of Maritime Security Cooperation. These include Humanitarian Aid & Disaster Relief (HADR) operations and Visit, Board, Search and Seizure (VBSS) drills, which form a part of Anti-Piracy operations. Exercises of these nature enhance inter-operability thereby enabling the two navies to smoothly function together in the sphere of maritime security / HADR operations, should the need arise.
In addition, during the port visits, the Fleet Commander along with the Commanding Officers of the ships, meet high-ranking officials of the Navy, state administration, port management, coastal security organization, police, and other stakeholders of maritime security in the countries visited in order to share professional experiences and exchange best practices in areas of mutual interest.
Vice Admiral Anil Chopra, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command is also visiting Tokyo to witness the first JIMEX.
The government has been deploying ships of the Indian Navy on Eastbound long range deployments in keeping with India’s ‘Look East’ policy, to strengthen military ties with the countries of this strategically important region.