Indian Navy’s second Air Squadron (INAS) 316 commissioned at INS Hansa

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The Indian Navy Air Squadron (INAS) 316 comprises a fleet of 4 Boeing P-8I multi-role long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft.

Indian Navy’s second Air Squadron comprising 4 P-81 aircraft commissioned at INS Hansa

Indian Navy commissioned the second Indian Naval Air Squadron (INAS) 316 into service at INS Hansa, Dabolim. The INAS 316 was commissioned in the presence of the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral R Hari Kumar

The Second Indian Naval Air Squadron (INAS) 316 comprises a fleet of P-81 aircraft. Its commissioning will add to the Indian Navy’s surveillance power in the Indian Ocean Region.

The INAS 316 was commissioned at the INS Hansa, a naval air station near Dabolim in Goa.

About INAS 316

  • The Indian Navy Air Squadron (INAS) 316 will operate Boeing P-8I multi-role long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft.
  • The Boeing P-8I aircraft has twin jet engines and can be equipped with air-to-ship missiles and torpedoes.
  • The squadron has been named ‘The Condors’ after one of the largest flying birds in the world. The insignia of the squadron depicts a Condor searching the blue expanse of the sea.
  • The first batch of 8 P-81 aircraft was acquired by the Indian Navy in 2013 and they are stationed at INS Rajali in Arakkonam in Tamil Nadu.
  • The second batch includes four additional P-81 aircraft. The aircraft are INAS 316 squadron are part of the four additional aircraft contract, which was awarded by the Defence Ministry in 2016.
  • Boeing had delivered the 12th Poseidon-8I maritime patrol aircraft to Indian Navy last month. The fleet is being operated primarily to carry out surveillance in the Indian Ocean region.

P-81 aircraft

The Indian Navy is the first international customer of Boeing’s P-8 aircraft. The P-8I fleet has been an integral part of the Indian Navy’s fleet ever since and has surpassed 35,000 flight hours since its first induction in 2013.

The P-81 aircraft has superior maritime surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities and operational readiness. It has proven to be an important asset to the Navy.

The P-81 aircraft is also used now by US Navy, UK’s Royal Air Force,  Royal Australian Air Force and Royal Norwegian Air Force.

Significance

India is raising the new squadron amid growing concerns over China’s increasing forays into the Indian Ocean Region. The INAS 316 will operate the second batch of four additional P-8I aircraft, which will help the Indian Navy deter, detect and destroy any threat to the nation in the Indian Ocean Region. 

India now has two squadrons of P-8I – the first squadron comprising of 8  aircraft acquired in 2013 and the recent second batch.

 

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