Eveline de Klerk
Walvis Bay-Indian High Commissioner to Namibia Kumar Tuhin has re-affirmed his commitment to work with all countries to protect freedom of navigation, keep sea lanes secure and to extend humanitarian assistance where required.
Tuhin made the remarks during a welcoming reception held aboard the Indian navy vessel INS Tarkash that docked at Walvis Bay where it made a port call last Friday.
Tuhin, who welcomed his fellow country men and women as well as their Namibian counterparts during the visit, said India’s relations with Namibia have always been warm and close and that it was only fit for the Indian navy to make a courtesy call to strengthen bilateral ties between the two countries.
He added that fraternal ties established by former presidents Sam Nujoma and Hifikepunye Pohamba, as well as the former Indian prime ministers Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi have been nurtured by the current leaders, President Hage Geingob and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Visits by President Geingob and President Mukherjee in 2015 and 2016, respectively, have given fresh impetus to bilateral ties. Our relations in other areas like trade, commerce, culture are continually strengthening,” he said.
Before arriving in Walvis Bay, INS Tarkash made port calls in several countries including, Morocco, Senegal, Nigeria and Angola. The ship left for South Africa on Sunday before returning to India. The INS Tarkash has total 30 officers and 250 sailors on board.
INS Tarkash is a Teg Class ‘Stealth’ Frigate commissioned into the Indian Navy on Nov 9, 2012. The ship gets its name from a Sanskrit word meaning a “Quiver” of arrows, reminiscent of the epic battles of Ramayana and Mahabharata.
Tarkash is truly a “quiver” of high-density of weapons and sensors manned by its highly motivated crew, making her one of the most potent platforms of the Indian navy.
The Indian naval ship carries cutting-edge weaponry, which includes Supersonic Brahmos anti-ship missiles, advanced surface-to-air missiles, 100 mm medium range guns, an optically controlled 30-mm close-in weapon system, anti-submarine and anti-ship torpedoes and rocket launchers.
The ship incorporates stealth features to outsmart the enemy with her reduced radar, infrared, acoustic and magnetic signatures thus, making it difficult for the enemy to detect her.
The ship is powered by four gas turbines and sophisticated controls and is capable of doing speeds in excess of 30 knots. Electric power is supplied by four diesel alternators, which together produces 3.2 megawatt of power.