New Delhi: Ram Nath Kovind, the President of India and Supreme Commander of Indian Armed Forces, awarded the President’s Colours to Indian Naval Academy (INA) today. The President’s Colours – the highest honour that is bestowed upon a military unit – was received by Academy Cadet Captain Sushil Singh on behalf of the INA in a parade comprising 730 cadets of INA and a 150-man Guard of Honour.
A special postal cover was also released by the President to commemorate the occasion, as reported earlier by Indus Dictum.
Kovind congratulated the INA, its present incumbents as well as past, on the occasion of the award and on completion of 50 years of the Naval Academy for their hard work and dedication towards realization of this proud day.
“The fine parade this morning resonates well with the high reputation this Academy has earned for itself in a relatively short span of time. The President’s Colours should serve as the motivating symbol to inspire and mould a generation of officers that will pass out from this world class institution,” said the President.
Arif Mohammed Khan, Governor of Kerala; Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff; Kerala State Minister for Ports, Ramachandran Kadannappally; Vice Admiral AK Chawla, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Southern Naval Command; and other senior service and civilian dignitaries graced the occasion.
The event was also witnessed by NCC Cadets of 32nd Battallion, Kerala, and children from Sainik School, Kodagu, and local schools of Payyannur, besides the service and civillian personnel of INA.
Indian Naval Ships Magar and Sujata and Indian Coast Guard Ship Sarathi were anchored off Ettikkulam Bay to mark the momentous occasion.
Award of the President’s Colours to the INA is a recognition of the yeoman service rendered by the institution in shaping the leadership of the Navy by training naval officers over the last fifty years at three different locations – Kochi, Goa and Ezhimala.
The Naval Academy was first established at a temporary location at Kochi in 1969. With the increase in strength of the trainees, the Naval Academy was relocated to INS Mandovi at Goa in 1986. The INA found its permanent home at Ezhimala, Kerala and was inaugurated on 8 January 2009.
INA-Ezhimala over a period of 10 years has commissioned 5,930 officers into the Indian Navy and Coast Guard, including 531 women officers. INA has a present strength of 963 trainees including 44 women trainees and 26 trainees from friendly foreign countries.
The Indian Navy was the first of the three armed forces to be awarded the President’s Colours on 27 May 1951. Besides the INA, Southern Naval Command, Eastern Naval Command, Western Naval Command, the Western and Eastern Fleet as well as the Submarine Arm are the other units of the Indian navy to be awarded the President’s Colours.
The Indian Navy is also presently conducting a joint disaster relief (HADR) exercise ‘Tiger Triumph’ with the US in Vizag, and the first Indo-Qatari joint Naval Exercise Za’ir-Al-Bahr (Roar of the Sea) in Doha. News of the award also comes shortly after it was revealed that computer hardware was stolen from the Indian Navy Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant in Kochi.
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