Kids Corner


"My Heart Will Go On ..." Sings the Indian Navy

"A Postcard From Mumbai", by ROHIT SHAW



Mumbai, India

Disaster struck the Indian Navy warship, INS Vindhyagiri (F42), twice in less than 12 hours. It now sleeps with the fishes at the bottom of Mumbai Harbour.

It was broad daylight, approx 3:30 pm, on Sunday, January 30, 2011, when the saga began.

The warship worth Rs. 400 crores was out sailing on a picnic cruise near Sunk Rock Lighthouse in Mumbai harbour, loaded with 300 tons of fuel. Almost 400 officers and their families were on board, belatedly celebrating Indian Navy Day (two months late), when the warship collided with a small merchant ship.

Though there was extensive damage, most of the Navy Day merrymakers on board were hastily evacuated, though some with injuries.

Thereafter, "the warship was moved into the naval dockyard," said Capt. Manohar Nambiar.

Twelve hours after the collision, "there was a fire on board."

The Economic Times reports that a number of sailors remained ‘stuck' on the burning ship as late as Monday morning.

By now, Monday evening (January 31, 2011), the warship has sunk and is now resting, with a hole on its starboard side and a cracked hull, on the shallow bottom of the dockyard. The widespread damage to the ship (see photo above) is now completely hidden by the sea. Only the mast remains visible.

India Today reports that oil leaking from the ship remains uncontrolled.  

"Officially," reports The Hindustan Times today, "the Indian Navy continued to insist that the Vindhyagiri had not sunk"!

Now, let me see, how much is Rs. 400 crore in real money?

Approx. U.S.$ 100 million, I think!

Here's what else the warship had on board:

It had surface radar system. And navigation radar. It has sonar - actually, Active Attack sonar.

And it had on board two MK6 Vickers 115 mm guns. Four AK-230 30 mm guns. Two Oerlikon 20 mm guns. Two Triple ILAS 3 324 mm torpedo tubes loaded with NST-58 torpedoes.

And one Westland Sea King aircraft.

They are all safely at the bottom of the Indian Ocean now, permanently safe from those perfidious Pakistanis.

With friends like these, who needs enemies!     

And, by the way, this is not the first such collision resulting in the casual sinking of ships here.

This is the fourth one in less than two years!

According to a report in The Times of India today, India's Shipping Ministry has announced that "it is planning to revamp its communication system soon."

But all's not lost.

This is Mumbai and Bollywood is a mere hop, step and jump from this site.

Am I the only one who can see it clearly? Isn't this the stuff one needs for a Titanic II?

But, we'll call it Vindhyagiri: The Movie.

All we need to do is to throw some Ambani money into a pot, add Aishwarya and Salman, and mix it all with a few whoops of "Jai Ho!" and A.R. Rahman - and we'll have a winner on our hands, desi ishtyle! Of course, Lata Mageskar will have to be the one to sing "My heart will go on ..."  (Sorry, Celine ...) 

In the meantime, let's find a ‘phoren hand' to blame this tragic, though self-inflicted, sinking of India's Bismarck, and milk some sympathy from the terrorist-weary world!   

Jai Hind.


February 1, 2011  


Conversation about this article

1: Karamjeet Singh (Jaipur, India), February 01, 2011, 2:29 PM.

Indian armed forces fare well when they are beating up on one of their weaker neighbours or their own minorities. But they'll get nowhere, trust me, if and when they are at war with a nation that is an equal or close to it. This is particularly true now that the numbers of Sikhs are fast dwindling in the Indian armed forces as the latter are actively being hinduized. Why? Because it is a great source of employment for the beggars. Remember, the India-China War from four decades ago? India didn't have a snowball's chance in hell! If it hadn't been for the Sikh troops, Delhi-ites would be eating Peking duck instead of tandoori chicken in Khan Market! Lately, China has once again been beating up on India on the latter's North and North-Eastern borders ... and, understandably, not a peep from India! What the Vindhyagiri incident reveals is that India's non-Sikh forces are no better than Keystone cops.

2: Mary N. (Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.), February 01, 2011, 3:31 PM.

This is simply hilarious!

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