The Indian Navy’s Hydrographic Survey ship INS Darshak, which was on a two-month deployment to Sri Lanka, has successfully completed the surveys of Weligama Bay and the southern coast of Sri Lanka, an official statement said on Saturday.
The result of the surveys was formally handed over by Captain Peush Pawsey, Commanding Officer, INS Darshak, to Vice Admiral R.C. Wijegunaratne, the Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy, in a ceremony held at Colombo on Friday.
The Weligama Bay was last surveyed more than 100 years ago.
The survey operations were undertaken in three phases and the ship also visited Colombo and Galle harbour. The ship and its survey motor boats fitted with multi beam systems were extensively deployed and hydrographic survey data for more than 7,000 nautical miles was collected.
The ship’s Chetak helicopter also participated in the operations.
Officers and sailors of the Sri Lanka Navy were also on board the ship during the joint survey operations and were imparted training on various aspects of hydrographic surveying.
In addition, the sailors of both the navies interacted during the ship’s stay at Colombo and Galle and played friendly football, volleyball and basketball matches. Beach cleaning drives were also conducted as part of the interaction.
INS Darshak has the unique distinction of having surveyed in Mauritius, Seychelles, Myanmar, Mozambique and Tanzania in the last few years.
“The successful completion of the maiden joint hydrographic survey with the Sri Lanka Navy marks a new beginning in the bilateral relations,” the Indian Navy said.
This came as Prime Minister Narendra Modi concluded a two-day visit to Sri Lanka on Friday.
As per reports, this month Sri Lanka denied permission to a Chinese submarine to dock in its harbour.