INS Tarkash, India’s third naval ship deployed to for Operation Kaveri: Foreign Secretary

27 April, 2023 | Anupam Shrivastav

INS Tarkash National

India has deployed its third warship to evacuate Indians stuck in Sudan under the ongoing Operation Kaveri said the Foreign Secretary FS Kwatra.

India has deployed its third warship INS Tarkash under the ongoing Operation Kaveri to evacuate all the Indians stuck in war ravaged Sudan, said Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra on Thursday.

The Foreign Secretary made the remarks above while speaking at a Ministry of External Affairs media briefing on Operation Kaveri, which was initiated by the Government of India to rescue Indians stuck in conflict-torn Sudan.

“I’m informed that the third ship, INS Tarkash, has also reached Port Sudan today as part of our efforts,” said the Foreign Secretary. While¬†briefing the media on the progress of the rescue mission in Sudan, the Foreign Secretary stated.

Two other Naval ships have also been positioned alongside INS Tarkash

“Two naval ships have also been positioned as part of Government of India efforts. INS Sumedha was the first one to dock, took up, picked up roughly 300 odd Indians yesterday, brought them to Port Jeddah and is today back in Port Sudan to fetch the next group of Indians and bring them to safe harbors.”

Kwatra stated that the Indian government is making many measures to rescue Indians from Sudan, including the establishment of a control room in both India and Sudan. Kwatra further added “PM Narendra Modi addressed a high-level meeting in which he personally reviewed and directed the officials of the Government of India to take suitable measures to assist and bring back these stranded Indians,”

He also added “As part of our efforts, two C-130 aircraft of Indian Air Force have been mobilized and are constantly positioned in Jeddah, and have been there since April 19. We have also set up a control room in Jeddah and a control room in Port Sudan. So we have two control rooms working along with our embassy. So there’s a full triangulation of efforts between the control room in Jeddah through our consulate and mission in Riyadh, through the control room team in Port Sudan, which is the north-eastern coast of Sudan, and our embassy in Khartoum City.”

“And of course, each of these three hubs is coordinating their efforts and direction, to bring back the stranded Indians, with the headquarters in Delhi,” he said.

Situation highly volatile in Sudan

Foreign Secretary Kwatra also provided information on Sudan’s current status and ceasefires. He said that ceasefires had been announced multiple times and that many of them had not been observed. “There has been feedback of sporadic firing going on. The situation on the ground remains highly volatile,” Kwatra stated.

Setting aside speculations on how many Indians might be stranded in Sudan, Kwatra said,¬†“Our estimate is that approximately that there are 3500 Indians. These are approximate numbers.”

He further added “More specifically, I think 3000-odd have already registered online. And roughly an additional 300 are in touch with the Mission embassies. The government of India’s focus in this entire effort has been to advise and assist the standard Indian nationals.”

Foreign Secretary FS Kwatra also said that External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has also contacted his counterparts in partner countries whose citizens are stuck in Sudan. “These included Foreign Ministers of the US, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and last night also had a conversation with the UK foreign ministers. This is over and above. His meetings with the UN Secretary-General in New York on April 20 focused exclusively on the situation in Sudan, with a view to making an assessment that would help the Government of India’s efforts to bring back the standard Indians there,” He said

Sudan has been racked by bloodshed as a result of clashes between the army and paramilitary forces. According to Khaleej Times, a 72-hour ceasefire was declared to quell the skirmish after more than 400 people were killed in Sudan.