Indian Navy Day; its History and Importance

BY Tiya Chatterji December 4, 2019

Navy day is celebrated in India on the 4th of December every year, to commemorate the achievements of the Indian Navy. The date of 4th December is observed to mark operation Trident that took place in 1971. Several nations observe navy day at various dates aiming at recognition of their navy.

The importance of this day and the date lies in the history of the Indian navy. In the year 1971, Indo-Pakistan war took place- operation Trident, when India launched an attack on the Pakistan harbor. This was the first instance when an anti- ship missile was used in the operation. The Indian Navy as part of the operation sank four Pakistani vessels including PNS Khaibar, killing hundreds of Pakistani Navy personnel but no causalities suffered on the Indian counterpart. On the day, those killed in the Indo-Pakistan War of 1971 are also remembered. The Indian Navy's three warships -- INS Nipat, INS Nirghat and INS Veer -- played an important role in the attack.

The Indian Navy is the marine branch of the Indian Armed Forces and the President of India is its Commander-in-Chief. Chhatarpati Shivaji Bhosle, Maratha emperor, is considered as 'Father of the Indian Navy'. The Navy also organizes a Beating Retreat ceremony at Gateway of India in Mumbai on the eve of the Navy Day. The Indian Naval Band performs across places between Gateway of India and Radio Club in Mumbai. The Indian Navy warships and aircraft are open to visitors, especially school children.

This year Navy Day celebrations took place in Cheriya Kadamakud, Kerala. This is the village where various rehabilitation and humanitarian assistance programmes were initiated by the Indian Navy, in the aftermath of the devastating floods of August 2018 in which the Navy had saved about 17000 people. The theme of Navy Day 2019 is “Indian Navy – Silent, Strong and Swift.”