Navy commissions nation's 2nd UAV squadron in Gujarat | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Navy commissions nation's 2nd UAV squadron in Gujarat

Two years after the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes, the Indian Navy commissioned an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) squadron at Porbandar in Gujarat for intelligence gathering, surveillance and reconnaissance along India’s west coast.

delhi Updated: Jan 17, 2011 19:45 IST

Two years after the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes, the Indian Navy commissioned an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) squadron at Porbandar in Gujarat for intelligence gathering, surveillance and reconnaissance along India’s west coast.

Designated as INAS 343, this is the first operational UAV squadron under the Mumbai based Western Naval Command. The squadron is equipped with Israeli made, Searcher Mk II and Heron UAVs. These assets are capable of beaming real time live pictures of maritime targets to commands ashore.

The UAVs will synergise the capabilities of the Army, Air Force, Coast Guard and local authorities. Gujarat governor Kamla Beniwal mmissioned the squadron.

A navy spokesperson said the squadron, nicknamed ‘Frontier Formidables’, would allow the navy to patrol the northern reaches of the Arabian Sea and also help monitor sea lanes of communication originating from the Gulf. It will also provide surveillance cover to high value assets along the western coast.

The navy had raised its first UAV squadron at Kochi in 2006 to keep an eye on the country’s east coast.