In a moment of pride for Goa, one of the Indian Navy's prominent air stations situated in the coastal state, INS Hansa marked its diamond jubilee last week. Located near Dabolim, it is India's biggest naval airbase which was set up with Sea Hawk, Alize, and Vampire aircraft at Coimbatore in 1958. Later, it was commissioned as INS Hansa on September 5, 1961. Post the liberation of Goa, the Navy took over Dabolim airfield in April 1962 and the INS Hansa was moved to Dabolim in June 1964.
An average annual flying period of over 5000 hours
Marking a long and illustrious journey, INS Hansa has completed 6 decades of its inception. With a humble start at the time of commissioning, INS Hansa has witnessed a tremendous expansion of its fleet, which now has over 40 military aircraft, operating from the station presently.
In addition to this, the facility has logged an average annual flying period of over 5000 hours. Notably, this centre also functions as a civil aviation base by round-the-clock handling of domestic and international flights, throughout the week. As per records, INS Hansa welcomes 29000 flights in a year, on average.
Home to some of India's most prestigious aircraft
Housing Indian Navy's frontline air squadrons, INS Hansa aggregates some of the top-notch vehicles. Glorifying the air-base, these are some of the aircraft that are famed across the country-
- INAS 310 'Cobras' with Dornier-228 aircraft
- INAS 315 'Winged Stallions' with the long-range maritime patrol aircraft IL-38SD
- INAS 339 'Falcons' with the airborne early warning Kamov-31 helicopter
- INAS 303 'Black Panthers'
- INAS 300 ' White Tigers' with the supersonic carrier-borne MiG 29K fighters
- INAS 323 'Harriers' with ALH Mk III helicopters.
Marking significant contributions to the Civil Sector
Additionally, Boeing P8I long-range maritime reconnaissance aircraft will soon start operations at this centre, with the induction of INAS 316. Commodore Ajay Daniel Theophilus Commanding Officer, INS Hansa said, "Over the years, the base has represented a crucial segment of the Navy's combat power. Aircraft from Hansa augment the security of the entire western seaboard significantly, including offshore assets, and undertake extensive surveillance to neutralise threats at and from the sea."
Further, INS Hansa has also been beneficial for the civil authorities during search and rescue operations. It has assisted in works related to HADR, flood relief, community activities, and umpteen Vande Bharat flights. Given its contribution to the Civil and Military areas, the naval base stands as one of the most priced possessions of the Indian Republic today.
- With inputs from ANI