Indian Navy’s Talwar-class frigate INS Tarkash arrived reached Lagos port in Nigeria on Thursday, 8 September, as part of her voyage across 3 Oceans, over 24000nm and 133 Days with the mission to strengthen bridges of friendship and celebrate “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav”.
The ship was welcomed by officials of the Nigerian Navy, the High Commission of India, and children of the Indian Language School. During her port call, the ship will conduct professional interactions with the Nigerian Navy to enhance Interoperability and share best practices between the navies. In addition, the ship will also participate in sports fixtures, and social engagements and will remain open to visitors to provide an opportunity for the Indian diaspora and locals to interact with her crew.
INS TARKASH, which arrived in Lagos waters yesterday, is expected to undertake a joint military exercise with her Nigerian counterpart as part of activities outlined to mark the 61st anniversary of the Nigerian Navy. While in Nigeria, the Indian Navy medical officers onboard the ship, are expected to offer free medical services and advice to thousands of downtrodden members of the society.
The free medical services and joint military exercises are also part of activities aimed at fostering the existing India-Nigeria relationships and boosting the capacity of military personnel.
Tarkash would also undertake tactical and operational training of some Nigerian Navy (NN) personnel. Flag Officers Commanding (FOCs) Western Naval Command (WNC) and Naval Training Command (NAVTRAC), Rear Admirals Ferguson Bobai and Ifeola Mohammed who made this disclosure said that Nigerian Naval officers would board the Indian warship to Angola for joint training.
“The Indian Navy has been instrumental in the training of Nigerian military personnel. It is hoped that this visit would further cement the existing relationship between Nigeria and India,” Bobai said, adding that both navies shared a lot in common in training, manpower development, and equipment transfer.
This is not the first time INS Tarkash is visiting Nigeria, on 5 September 2019, the vessel visited Nigeria and her crew engages extensively with the Nigerian Navy including professional interactions and joint exercises, sports events, and social engagements. Likewise, on 1 June 2017, INS Tarkash was also in Nigeria to mark the Nigerian Navy Day which is celebrated every year on June 1.
INS Tarkash carries cutting-edge weaponry which includes supersonic anti-ship missiles, advanced surface-to-air missiles, medium-range guns, close-in weapon systems, anti-submarine, anti-ship torpedoes, and rocket launchers. Powered by four gas turbines and sophisticated controls, the ship is capable of doing speeds in excess of 30 knots.