Eastern Naval Command

The Eastern Naval Command is one of the three command-level formations of the Indian Navy.[2] It is headquartered in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh.[3] The command is responsible for the all naval forces in the Bay of Bengal and parts of the Indian Ocean and the naval establishments on the east coast of India.

Eastern Naval Command
Eastern Naval Command HQ at Visakhapatnam.jpg
Eastern Naval Command HQ at Visakhapatnam
Active1 March 1968
Country India
Branch Indian Navy
TypeCommand
HeadquartersVisakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh
Commanders
FOC-in-CVice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain, AVSM, VSM[1]
FOC Eastern FleetRear Admiral Sanjay Vatsayan, NM

The Command was established on 1 March 1968.[4][5] The Command is commanded by a Three Star Flag Officer of the rank of Vice Admiral with the title Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Command (FOC-in-C). Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain, AVSM, VSM is the current FOC-in-C ENC, who took over on 1 June 2019.[1]

HistoryEdit

After the independence and the partition of India on 15 August 1947, the ships and personnel of the Royal Indian Navy were divided between the Dominion of India and the Dominion of Pakistan. The division of the ships was on the basis of two-thirds of the fleet to India, one third to Pakistan.[6]

The Surface Fleet of the Navy was called Indian Fleet and was commanded by the Flag Officer Commanding Indian Fleet (FOCIF). Initially, the shore establishments on the eastern coast were headed by a captain in the appointment of Naval Officer-in-Charge, Vishakapatnam (NOIC).[7] This was subsequently upgraded to the appointment of Commodore East (COMEAST), a One Star appointment. The FOCIF and COMEAST reported into the Chief of the Naval Staff. In July 1967, COMEAST was upgraded to the two-star appointment of Flag Officer, East Coast (FOEC).[8] On 1 March 1968, the Eastern Fleet was also created. With this, the appointment of FOEC was re-designated Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command (FOC-in-C ENC). The Indian Fleet was split between the Western Fleet and the Eastern Fleet with the Fleet Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet (FOCEF) reporting into the FOC-in-C ENC.[9] On 1 November 1973, the command was raised to the three-star appointment of vice-admiral.[10]

Area of responsibilityEdit

Under the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command (FOC-in-C East) is the Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet (FOCEF), Commodore Commanding Submarines (East) (COMCOS (E)), Admiral Superintendent Dockyard for Visakhapatnam, shore establishments, and five Naval Officers-in-Charge (NOICs).

The Eastern naval Command has the states of Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Tamil Nadu under its area of responsibility.[11]

The FOC-in-C (East) is the submarine operating authority, under whom Commodore Commanding Submarines (East) [COMCOS (E)] operate. The 11th (Sindhughosh class submarine) and 8th (Foxtrot class) Submarine Squadrons operate under COMCOS (E). INS Virbahu, a submarine base commissioned on 19 May 1971, is the alma mater of the Indian Navy submariners.

 
INS Jalashwa flagship of Eastern Naval Command

OrganizationEdit

The Eastern Naval Command is organized as follows:[12]

Post Current Holder References
Flag Officer Commanding in Chief Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain AVSM VSM [1]
Chief of Staff Vice Admiral Satish Namdeo Ghormade AVSM NM [13]
Flag Officer Commanding Eastern Fleet Rear Admiral Sanjay Vatsayan, NM [14]
Flag Officer Commanding Tamil Nadu & Puducherry Naval Area Rear Admiral K J Kumar, VSM [15]
Admiral Superintendent Dockyard (ASD) - Visakhapatnam Rear Admiral Amit Bose VSM [16]
Commodore Commanding Submarines (COMCOS) - East
Naval Officer In-Charge (NOIC) - Andhra Pradesh Commodore Sanjiv Issar [17]
Naval Officer In-Charge (NOIC) - Tamil Nadu Commodore Alok Bhatnagar [18]
Naval Officer In-Charge (NOIC) - Orissa
Naval Officer In-Charge (NOIC) - West Bengal Commodore Suprobho K De [19]

Naval basesEdit

 
Admiral DK Joshi, then Chief of the Naval Staff, receiving a guard of honour during a visit to the Eastern Naval Command in November 2013

The headquarters in Visakhapatnam, is also a strategically important dockyard for two nuclear-powered submarines. Due to congestion and heavy shipping traffic, a new 20 square km base INS Varsha is being developed for exclusive naval use about 50 km south of Visakhapatnam.

The Eastern Navy fleet is distributed among its bases at Kolkata, Paradip, Tuticorin, Kakinada and Chennai on the east coast, and in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.[11] The Navy has opened its latest naval air base, INS Baaz, at the southernmost tip of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands to secure the strategically important Straits of Malacca, and another naval air station in Kolkata to base an unmanned aerial vehicle squadron.[20][21]

Base City State/Territory Role
INS Circars Visakhapatnam Andhra Pradesh Logistics and Administrative support
INS Dega Naval Air Station
INS Virbahu Submarine base
INS Satavahana Submarine Training Base of the Indian Navy
INHS Kalyani Naval Hospital
INS Kalinga Naval Missile Depot
INS Eksila Marine gas turbine maintenance
INS Karna[22] MARCOS Base
INS Varsha (Under Construction) Future submarine base for the ENC
INS Adyar Chennai Tamil Nadu Logistics and Maintenance support
NAE Chennai Chennai Naval Air Enclave at Chennai International Airport
INS Parundu Uchipuli Naval Air Station
INS Rajali Arakkonam Naval Air Station
INS Kattabomman Tirunelveli Submarine VLF facility
INS Tuticorin Tuticorin Logistics support
INS Netaji Subhash Kolkata West Bengal Logistics and Administrative support
INS Paradip (Under Construction)[23] Paradip Odisha Forward Operating Base
INS Bhubaneswar (Under Construction) Bhubaneswar Naval Air Enclave
 
The ex-INS Vikrant as a museum ship in Mumbai.

CapabilitiesEdit

 
The INS Vikrant under-construction

In 2005, Eastern Naval Command was home to 30 warships. INS Jalashwa is the flagship of Eastern Fleet and provides amphibious capabilities to the Indian Navy in the Bay of Bengal. Eastern Fleet is equipped with submarine pens and maintenance dockyards. The Amphibious Task Group of Eastern Naval Fleet has INS Jalashwa (LPD). It also includes five Rajput-class destroyers, four Kora-class corvettes, three Godavari-class frigates, three Shivalik-class frigates, Sindhughosh-class submarines and the Akula-class submarine INS Chakra. Naval aviation is provided by Westland Sea King helicopters. Apart from these, a number of smaller vessels such as fast attack craft made the total fleet strength of the command 52 vessels in 2012.

FutureEdit

Until 1997, INS Vikrant was the flagship of Eastern Fleet. After her de-commissioning in 1997, the Eastern Fleet has been without an aircraft carrier.[20][24] Its aircraft carrier capability will get restored after first indigenously built aircraft carrier INS Vikrant (2013) joins the Eastern Fleet by 2023 after completing extensive sea trials and is likely to based in Vishakapatnam.[25][26]

List of commandersEdit

Rank Name Appointment Date Left Office Notes References
Naval Officer-in-Charge, Visakhapatnam (NOIC Visakhapatnam)
Captain Geoffrey Gowlland 1948 1951 Seconded from the Royal Navy [27]
Bhaskar Sadashiv Soman December 1951 2 December 1953 [7][28]
Reginald Sawhny 2 December 1953 June 1954 [7]
R. S. David June 1954 [29][30]
Commodore, East Coast (COMEAST)
Commodore M. K. Heble 12 June 1958 5 February 1960 [31]
G. S. Kapoor 5 February 1960 June 1962 [32][33]
J. S. Mehra 14 June 1962 June 1965 [34][35]
Douglas St. John Cameron June 1965 31 May 1967 [36]
Flag Officer, East Coast (FOEC)
Rear Admiral Kesavapillai Ramkrishnan Nair July 1967 1 March 1968 [8]
Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command (FOC-in-C ENC)
Rear Admiral Kesavapillai Ramkrishnan Nair 1 March 1968 1 March 1971 [37]
Vice Admiral
Nilakanta Krishnan 1 March 1971 March 1973 [37]
K. L. Kulkarni March 1973 1 April 1976 [38][39][40]
Swaraj Parkash 1 April 1976 1 March 1977 [41]
S. H. Sarma 1 March 1977 2 February 1978 [42]
M. R. Schunker 2 February 1978 24 March 1980 [43][44]
M. K. Roy 24 March 1980 8 April 1984 [45][46]
Jayant Ganpat Nadkarni 8 April 1984 28 February 1986 Later served as Chief of the Naval Staff [47][48]
S. C. Chopra 28 February 1986 27 February 1989 [49]
Laxminarayan Ramdas 27 February 1989 30 November 1990 Later served as Chief of the Naval Staff [50]
Vijai Singh Shekhawat 31 December 1990 31 October 1992 Later served as Chief of the Naval Staff [51]
B. Guha 10 November 1992 [52]
P. S. Das 31 May 1995 27 February 1998 [53]
Vinod Pasricha 28 February 1998 March 2001 [54][55]
John Colin De Silva March 2001 1 October 2003 [55]
O P Bansal 1 October 2003 30 September 2005 [56][57]
Sureesh Mehta 1 October 2005 31 October 2006 Later served as Chief of the Naval Staff [58][59]
A K Singh 1 November 2006 31 March 2007
Raman Prem Suthan 1 April 2007 30 March 2008 [60][61]
Nirmal Kumar Verma 1 April 2008 31 August 2009 Later served as Chief of the Naval Staff [62]
Anup Singh 1 September 2009 31 October 2011 [63]
Anil Chopra 1 November 2011 2014 Later served as FOC-in-C Western Naval Command [64][65][66]
Satish Soni 16 June 2014 29 February 2016 [67][68]
Harish Bisht 1 March 2016 30 October 2017 [69]
Karambir Singh 31 October 2017 30 May 2019 Current Chief of the Naval Staff [70]
Atul Kumar Jain 1 June 2019 Incumbent [1]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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