Navy chief Admiral Dinesh Tripathi begins 5-day visit to Bangladesh

Navy chief Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi began a five-day visit to Bangladesh on Sunday with an aim to further consolidate the bilateral defence engagement and explore new avenues of cooperation in the maritime domain.
Navy chief Admiral Dinesh Tripathi
Navy chief Admiral Dinesh Tripathi

New Delhi | Navy chief Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi began a five-day visit to Bangladesh on Sunday with an aim to further consolidate the bilateral defence engagement and explore new avenues of cooperation in the maritime domain.

The trip comes more than a week after Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visited India during which both sides vowed to expand the overall defence and strategic ties.

It is Admiral Tripathi's first official visit abroad after he took the reins of the Navy two months ago.

The Navy chief is scheduled to hold wide-ranging talks with his Bangladeshi counterpart, Admiral M Nazmul Hassan, and other top officials of Bangladesh's military, including the Army chief and Air Force chief.

Admiral Tripathi will also review the passing-out parade at the Bangladesh Naval Academy (BNA) in Chittagong on July 4.

The Chief of Naval Staff's engagements in the neighbouring country include an address at Bangladesh's National Defence College in Dhaka and visits to a few key defence facilities.

"The visit is aimed to consolidate bilateral defence relations between India and Bangladesh and to explore new avenues for naval cooperation," the Indian Navy said in a statement.

Naval cooperation between India and Bangladesh has been traditionally strong, encompassing a wide span including operational interactions, bilateral naval exercises and capacity-building programmes.

"The visit of the Chief of the Naval Staff, Indian Navy will further strengthen the strong bonds of friendship between the navies of both countries," the statement said.

Bangladesh has been an important partner under India's Neighbourhood First policy.

It is clearly visible in both the defence and maritime domains.

The maritime cooperation between the two countries has grown from strength to strength in recent years, with a significant ramp up on joint efforts towards protection of maritime interests.

Both sides have recognised the value of such cooperation and are poised to enhance the efforts even further. More broadly, in all efforts under the SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region) vision, Dhaka has been a natural partner and source of support for New Delhi, a military planner said.

The visit of the Navy chief is an affirmation of the positive trajectory of the naval relationship as well as an indication that both sides will significantly enhance their bilateral efforts at sea, he said on the condition of anonymity.

By working together against shared and common challenges, the two navies would enhance regional security and growth in line with the SAGAR vision as well as set an example of how cooperative efforts can deliver concrete outcomes, he added.

A military official said the cooperation between the two navies has regularly catalysed positive change in the Indian Ocean region.

A few years ago, when Bangladesh held the chairmanship of the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS), the two countries had collaborated to organise the maiden IONS maritime exercise, he said.

This exercise has continued to grow in size and scope ever since, and become a source of formalised standard operating procedures (SOPs), sharing of best practices and a means to enhance collective trust and interoperability, the official added.

In 2025, the Indian Navy would take over the chairmanship of the IONS and take the lead in establishing higher levels of maritime safety and security within the Indian Ocean, he said.

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