In continuation with the ongoing deployment of Indian Navy ships in the South China Sea, INS Ranvijay and INS Kora undertook bilateral maritime exercise with Vietnam People’s Navy (VPN) frigate VPNS Ly Thai To(HQ-012) on 18 Aug 21. The bilateral interaction aims to consolidate the strong bond shared by the two navies and would be another step towards strengthening India-Vietnam defence relations. The Indian Naval ships arrived at Cam Ranh, Vietnam on 15 August 21 for the harbour phase which included professional interactions with VPN maintaining extant Covid-19 protocols.
The sea phase included surface warfare exercises, weapon firing drills and helicopter operations. Regular interactions between the two navies over the years have enhanced their interoperability and adaptability. This has ensured a quantum jump in the complexity and scale of professional exchanges. This visit also holds special importance as Indian Naval ships celebrated the country’s 75th Independence Day in Vietnam. Defence ties between the two countries have been robust. The two countries undertook a defence security dialogue and Indian Naval ships have been frequently visiting Vietnamese Ports.
INS Ranvijay is a Rajput-class destroyer in active service with the Indian Navy. Ranvijay was commissioned on 15 Jan 1988. The Rajput-class guided-missile destroyers built for the Indian Navy are modified versions of Soviet Kashin-class destroyers. The Rajput class inherited their anti-aircraft and anti-submarine warfare roles for aircraft carrier task-force defense against submarines, low-flying aircraft, and cruise missiles from the Kashin class. INS Kora is the lead ship of the Kora-Class of Corvettes in active service with the Indian Navy. She is equipped with 3M-24 Anti-Ship Missiles, with two Strela-2M Anti-Air Missiles as defensive weapons.
Lý Thái T? (HQ-012) is a Gepard-class frigate (Gepard 3.9 type) in the Vietnam People’s Navy. She was built by the Zelenodolsk shipyard in Russia under signed contract to the Vietnamese Navy. Lý Thái T? is designed to perform searches, air defense, anti-submarine, escort, and patrol territorial waters and special areas with economic rights. Lý Thái T? can enter combat independently or in squadrons, and is equipped with stealth technology, to present a minimum presence on enemy radar screens. Vietnam and Russia signed a contract worth USD $350 million to build two Gepard-class frigates designed by the Institute ZPKB in Zelenodolsk.