Mumbai, Dec 08, 2021: President Ramnath Kovind today presented the ‘President’s Standard’ to the 22nd Missile Vessels Squadron of the Indian Navy at a ceremonial event in Mumbai.
The President’s Standard is the highest honour bestowed by the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces to a military unit in recognition of the service rendered to the nation.
Speaking on the occasion, President Shri Kovind said “the presentation of the Standard is a testimony to the exceptional service rendered by officers and sailors, past and present, of this squadron to our nation.” He recalled the role played by the 22nd Missile Squadron in sinking Pakistan Naval ships during the 1971 war fifty years ago.
Expressing happiness over Indian Navy’s commitment towards indigenization as part of Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Vision, the President said “this commitment of the Navy is a tribute to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj who is regarded by many historians as the founder of India’s battle-ready naval force in the 17th century.”
Maintaining peace in the Indian Ocean region is crucial for global maritime trade
The President said that India is a maritime nation and the Indian Navy has a huge role to play in furtherance of our foreign policy and in protecting our national interests and commercial aspirations. “It is a matter of great satisfaction that the Indian Navy has been successfully safeguarding our extensive maritime interests with resolve and tenacity” he said.
President further said that a large share of global maritime trade transits through the Indian Ocean Region. Therefore, maintaining peace and tranquility in this region is of paramount importance, not only for us, but also for the entire global community. “Today, as one of the largest navies in the world, the Indian Navy is looked upon by our maritime neighbours as a preferred security partner in the Indian Ocean region,” he added.
President Kovind also lauded the role played by the Indian Navy in rendering assistance to the people during humanitarian crises or natural disasters and praised its role in repatriation of citizens during Covid 19 and rescue operations during Cyclone Tauktae off the Maharasthra-Gujarat coast last year.
The President’s Standard ceremony witnessed an immaculately conducted ceremonial parade that began with the naval armed guard presenting a salute of arms to the President and was followed by the presentation of the Standard. The ceremony concluded with a Continuity Drill performance by naval personnel and an operational demonstration by MARCOS and naval helicopters.It was attended by the Governor of Maharashtra Shri Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral R Hari Kumar, Vice Admiral Ajendra Bahadur Singh, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command and several other civilian and military dignitaries.
About 22nd Missile Vessels Squadron
The 22nd Missile Vessel Squadron was formally established at Mumbai in Oct 1991 with ten Veer Class and three Prabal Class missile boats. However, the genesis of ‘Killers’ dates back to the year 1969, with the induction of OSA I Class missile boats from erstwhile USSR to bolster the strength of the Indian Navy.
On the night of 04-05 Dec 1971, the youngest warriors of a young Indian Navy drew first blood when they launched a devastating offensive on the Pakistan Navy. Indian Navy ships Nirghat, Nipat and Veer fired their Styx missiles and sank Pakistan Navy ships Khyber and Muhafiz, delivering a deathly blow to aspirations of the Pakistan Navy. Codenamed Op Trident, this operation is considered to be one of the most successful operations in modern naval history, with
The Indian Navy carried out another daring attack on the night of 8th /9th December, when INS Vinash, along with two frigates, launched four Styx missiles, sinking the Pakistan Naval Fleet Tanker Dacca and caused substantial damage to Keamari Oil Storage Facility at Karachi. It is because of these heroic deeds of the ships and men of the Squadron that they earned the title of ‘Killers’.