Chief of Naval Staff delivers 4th Admiral JG Nadkarni Memorial Lecture

The Navy Foundation Pune Chapter (NFPC) annually conducts a Memorial Lecture in honour of the late Admiral JG Nadkarni the 16th Chief of the Naval Staff (1987-1990), who had settled in Pune after his retirement. This year, the Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral R Hari Kumar PVSM AVSM VSM ADC delivered the 4th Admiral JG Nadkarni Memorial Lecture on the topic “Future Proofing the Indian Navy” at General Bipin Rawat Auditorium, RSAMI, Pune on 17 Jan 2024. The CNS was received by VAdm Jaywant Korde PVSM AVSM VSM (Retd), President NFPC who also delivered the welcome address.

The CNS opened his talk by drawing a connection between Adm JG Nadkarni General Bipin Rawat and the city of Pune – all of which had promoted true jointmanship between the three Services. He said that the nation had three goals Samruddha or prosperous Bharat, Saksham or capable Bharat, and Sachetan or self-aware Bharat and the Navy was vital towards attaining these goals. In particular, he emphasised the importance of the Navy in economic development by maintaining the security and safety of our sea lanes and said that it had responded promptly when merchant vessels were hijacked by pirates or attacked by missiles/drones. He said that the Navy remained committed to becoming fully Atmanirbhar by 2047 – the centenary of India’s independence. Towards this end, he mentioned some initiatives taken such as SPRINT (Supporting Pole-Vaulting in R&D through iDEX, NIIO and TDAC) and felt that some of the best ideas came from those whom he described as ‘mavericks’ – i.e. unconventional thinkers who challenged the status quo.

On the occasion, Dr Sayalee Gankar, VC DY Patil University, Pune Ambi was the Guest of Honour.  The Lecture was also well attended by a large audience mainly comprising naval veterans of the Navy Foundation Pune Chapter, veterans from sister services, members of affiliated organisations such as the Centre for Advanced Strategic Studies and Indian Maritime Foundation, Pune International Centre, representatives from corporates and industry as well as a large number of students from DY Patil University, and cadets from Sea Cadets Corps and Sea Scouts and Guides.

The proceedings began with observing one minute silence for our “Fallen Heroes,” in particular Cdr VS Pandit who would have been 100 years old on 25 Jan 2024. Following the lecture, the CNS also fielded a diverse range of questions on the activities of adversarial nations such as Pakistan and China in the Indian Ocean, keeping up with advancements in technology (including AI), National Security Strategy, theatre commands, Agnipath scheme, revitalising the mercantile marine, green initiatives, and creating greater awareness about our maritime history and heritage.  The Vote of Thanks was delivered by RAdm RJ Nadkarni AVSM VSM (Retd), son of the late Adm JG Nadkarni.

The Lecture was followed by an interaction of veterans and students with the CNS on the lawns of the RSAMI and the programme ended with a sumptuous lunch.

Some photos of the event may be viewed here.