India today formally gifted a fast patrol vessel worth Rs 100 crore to Seychelles at a virtual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Seychelles President Wavel Ramkalawan.
Modi and Ramkalawan also inaugurated a solar power plant, a court building and ten community development projects in the Indian Ocean island. The patrol vessel as well as the three other projects are part of India’s development assistance to that country.
The 48.9 m fast patrol vessel, built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineering, will be used for multi-purpose operations, such as patrolling, anti-smuggling, anti-poaching, and search and rescue (SAR). India’s High Commissioner Dalbir Singh Suhag handed over a ceremonial model of the fast patrol vessel to a Seychelles minister at the virtual summit.
The fast patrol vessel is the fourth ship gifted by India to Seychelles and is named PS Zoroaster.
Speaking on the occasion, Modi said Seychelles is central to India’s vision of Security and Growth for All in the Region (SAGAR).”India and Seychelles share a strong and vital partnership in the Indian ocean neighbourhood. Seychelles is central to India’s vision of ”SAGAR” (Security and Growth for All in the Region),” Modi said.
Referring to the handing over of the patrol vessel, the Prime Minister said India was committed to strengthening the maritime security of Seychelles. He also noted that India was able to supply essential medicines and 50,000 doses of ‘Made in India’ vaccines to Seychelles during times of need. “Seychelles was the first African country to receive the ‘Made in India’ Covid-19 vaccines,” he pointed out.
In his comments, Ramkalawan said his country wanted to deepen ties with India, adding today’s event was a “defining moment in the annals of bilateral ties”.