The Indian Navy also known as Bhāratīya Nau Senā) is the naval branch of the Indian Armed Forces. As of November 2017, 10,279 officers and 56,830 sailors are in service with the Navy.
With one of the longest coastlines for any country in the world, India has always been protected fiercely by its navy and its officers. Here is a list of our 5 real life heroes, who have served the navy with immense courage and loyalty and are marvelously still doing so.
Cdr Milind Mohan Mokashi
In 2015, Cdr Mokashi evacuated thousands of Indian and Foreign nationals from war-ravaged Yemen during Operation Rahat. Aden Harbour, on the night of March 31, was being patrolled by the boats of Houthi rebels who were heavily armed, when Cdr Mokashi intervened in a ship. Being the Commanding Officer of INS Sumitra, he immediately deployed armed boats manned by the sailors.
The officer received the Shaurya Chakra for his outstanding efforts, braving the heavy firing and shelling, by taking charge of the situation to ensure the safe embarkation of evacuees amid heavy firing.
Vice Admiral Krishnan
In 1971, Vice-Admiral Krishnan, Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, used a creative strategy that stunned Pakistan during the war. Krishnan was alarmed of the presence of Ghazi, Pakistan’s destructive submarine in the Bay of Bengal. That concerned him about INS Vikrant, one of India’s greatest and most formidable carriers. So he got an ageing destroyer INS Rajput to pretend to be Vikrant by sailing it out of Vizag and deceived the Pakistani Navy into believing that it was INS Vikrant.
Pakistanis ordered to change the direction of Ghazi to Vizag, falling for the trap. A few days later it was hit by an explosion and destroyed, whereas, INS Vikrant had been safely stationed in Andaman. Vikrant launched its first air strikes after Ghazi sank, that shook the Pakistani army.
Captain Pradeep Singh
Captain Pradeep Singh is the recipient of the Nao Sena Medal for Gallantry for his efforts and planning in 2015, during Operation Rahat. Captain Singh evacuated around 600 people of 18 nationalities and also 10 nurses who were stuck in heavy cross firing from Al Hodeidah and Aden harbours in Yemen.
Second Officer Kalyani Sen
Despite of the fact that women did not serve on board the ships, they did have some role in the navy being in Women’s Royal Indian Naval Service, established as part of the The Royal Indian Navy (RIN) during World War II. Second officer Kalyani Sen was the first Indian Service Woman to visit the UK to make a comparative study of training and administration in the Women’s Royal Naval Service.
“In India there is still a big prejudice against girls and women working with men…but the women are so keen to get into the Services that they are breaking it down,” she said.
Commodore Babru Bhan Yadav
Commodore Babru Bhan Yadav was the first to be awarded with Maha Vir Chakra in 1972. During the Bangladesh Liberation War, in 1971, Yadav led a smart missile attack against Pakistan’s port city of Karachi. “Operation Trident” was the code name of the mission.
Commodore Yadav’s citation reads that he displayed great leadership in the “offensive sweep on the enemy coast off Karachi, deep into the enemy harbor where he encountered two groups of large enemy warships, despite the threat of air, surface and submarine attack.”