Colombo, April 3: The 10th Edition of annual Indian Navy–Sri Lanka Navy bilateral maritime Exercise SLINEX-2023 is scheduled in Colombo from 3-8 April 2023. The Exercise is being conducted in two phases; the Harbour Phase in Colombo from 3-5 April followed by Sea Phase from 6-8 April, off Colombo.
The Indian Navy will be represented by INS Kiltan (Advanced Anti-Submarine Warfare Corvette) and INS Savitri (Offshore Patrol Vessel) while Sri Lanka Navy will have SLNS Gajabahu (Advance Offshore Patrol Vessel) and SLNS Sagara (OPV).
In addition, the Indian Navy Chetak helicopter and Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft along with Sri Lanka Air Force Dornier and BEL 412 helicopters would also participate in the Exercise.
The Exercise will also feature the Special Forces of the two Navies. The previous edition of SLINEX was conducted in Visakhapatnam from 7-12 March 2022.
SLINEX-2023 aims to enhance inter-operability, improve mutual understanding and exchange best practices/ procedures in multi-faceted Maritime operations between both Navies. The Harbour Phase would include sports fixtures, yoga session and cultural events which would provide an opportunity for personnel from both Navies to learn from each other, reinforce shared values and build bonds of friendship and camaraderie. Vice Adm Priyantha Perera, Commander of Sri Lanka Navy along with Vinod K. Jacob, Deputy High Commissioner, took part in the opening of SLINEX-2023 on 3 April 2023.
Gopal Baglay, High Commissioner of India is scheduled to host the visit of Hon. Premitha Bandara Tennakoon, State Minister of Defence onboard the indigenous Indian Naval ships.
To spread awareness and interest towards the Armed Forces both the Indian Naval ships will be kept open for a large number of visitors including school children. A Coordinated Indian Navy-Sri Lanka Navy Band/Cultural Performance in collaboration with Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre will be organized for public at Dutch Hospital and Viharmahadevi Park on 3 and 5 April 2023 respectively.
Harbour training activities, SME interaction and training at HARD simulator will also be progressed during SLINEX 23. A reception for the Senior Officials from Sri Lanka will be hosted onboard the Indian navy ships by the High Commissioner of India on 4 April. The Sea Phase would include Exercises in multi-dimensions like surface and anti-air firing Exercises, seamanship evaluations, helicopter and maritime patrol aircraft operations including cross deck flying, advance tactical manoeuvres, search and rescue and Special Forces operations at sea, which will further enhance the high degree of inter-operability already established between the two friendly Navies.
SLINEX series of Exercise exemplifies the deep engagement between India and Sri Lanka which has strengthened mutual cooperation in the maritime domain. Interaction between the SLN and IN has also grown significantly in recent years, in consonance with India’s policy of ‘Neighbourhood First’ and Hon’ble PM’s vision of ‘Security and Growth for all in the Region (SAGAR)’.