India, Bangladesh Establish Annual Coordinated Patrol in Bay of Bengal

The increased presence of Chinese nuclear and conventional submarines in the Bay of Bengal region presents a grave threat to India’s strategic and security concerns. As a result, New Delhi has offered to train Bangladesh’s naval submariners.

New Delhi (Sputnik) — In a move aimed at gaining a stronger foothold in the Indian Ocean region, the navies of India and Bangladesh have established a new coordinated patrol (CORPAT) regime in the Bay of Bengal. The first edition of the CORPAT will kick off on June 27 wherein four maritime patrol aircraft and four frigates, two each from both countries, will take part in the three-day long exercise. INS Satpura and INS Kadmatt of the Indian Navy will join the Bangladesh Navy's BNS Abu Bakar and BNS Dhaleswari.

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"The commencement of CORPAT is a major step towards the enhanced operational interaction between both navies," the Indian Navy said in a statement.

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Bangladesh and India had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on defense cooperation during Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to New Delhi on April 9, 2017. The Bangladesh Navy was also the chair of Indian Ocean Naval Symposium (IONS) from 2016 to 2018.

Maritime cooperation between the navies of India and Bangladesh has witnessed an upward trend in recent years despite a substantial strengthening of Bangladesh's defense relations with China in the past decade.

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China supplied five coastal patrol craft and anti-submarine semi-stealth large patrol craft along with two Ming-class Type 035B diesel-electric submarines to Bangladesh in October 2016.

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