China’s warship expelled, Indian submarine welcomed in Lanka

Wednesday 07th February 2024 05:44 EST

Colombo: After shutting its ports to the Chinese submarine and research vessel, Sri Lanka on February 3 welcomed Indian Navy submarine INS Karanj ahead of its Independence Day. It marks a diplomatic win for India. But the threat of Chinese submarine docking in the Indian backyard is far from over as Beijing constructs a sprawling naval base in Bangladesh.

The Sri Lankan Navy made this announcement, adding that while the submarine is in the island country, it will participate in a submarine awareness program, and the submarine crew will be exploring tourist attractions in the country.
The submarine is a Kalvari-class diesel-electric submarine based on the French Scorpene class submarines. It is designed by the French naval group DCNS and manufactured by Mazagon Dock Limited in Mumbai.

“INS Karanj is a 67.5m long submarine with a crew of 53, and it is commanded by Commander Arunabh,” the Sri Lankan navy said in an announcement. The submarine will depart from the Sri Lankan port on February 5.

The Indian submarine’s port call comes in the backdrop of Sri Lanka, sitting on the tip of the Indian Ocean region, putting a year-long moratorium on foreign research vessels from operating in its waters.

The moratorium that began on January 1 is seen as a big diplomatic and strategic victory for India that has raised alarm over the Chinese research vessels surveying the vast swathes of the IOR under the pretext of conducting scientific tests.
The data gathered through these tests is invaluable for the Chinese submarines seeking to navigate the shallow waters of Malacca Strait and through the East IOR, causing much consternation to India.

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