Indian Naval Ship Sumitra, an offshore patrol vessel, has arrived at Suva, Fiji on a three day visit from 26 to 29 Oct 16, as part of her operational deployment to Southern Indian Ocean and the Western Pacific, in pursuit of India’s ‘Act East’ policy and outreach to friendly countries.
The visit is aimed at strengthening bilateral ties and enhancing maritime security cooperation between the two countries. Sumitra, is the fourth of the Saryu class ships, based on an indigenous design, constructed by M/s Goa Shipyard Ltd, India.
Since commissioning in 2014, the ship has been deployed for multiple operational tasks, the most notable being ‘Operation Rahat’, which entailed the evacuation of personnel of various nationalities from war-torn Yemen in 2015.
The ship has a range of 6,500 nautical miles and is capable of embarking one Dhruv/ Chetak helicopter.
India and Fiji have historical cultural linkages dating back to the 19th Century. The bilateral relationship has grown significantly, with high level exchanges in the recent past.
Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi visited Fiji in November 2014. The visit of INS Sumitra to Suva will further strengthen this bilateral relationship and contribute to maritime security and peace in the South Western Pacific Ocean.