INS Sandhayak, the Indian Navy's oldest hydrographic survey vessel, was decommissioned at a naval dockyard in Visakhapatnam on Friday.
The ship had served the country for about 40 years and undertook approximately 200 major hydrographic surveys and numerous minor surveys in both east and west coasts. According to officials, the ship was also used for surveys in the Andaman Sea, and many neighbouring countries such as Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Bangladesh.
It was commissioned to the Navy on February 26, 1981.
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the ship was decommissioned in a low-key ceremony, according to a Navy release.
The National Flag, Naval Ensign, and the Decommissioning Pennant were lowered at sunset in the presence of Vice Admiral Ajendra Bahadur Singh, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Eastern Naval Command, the ceremonies' chief guest. The ceremony was also joined virtually by Vice Admiral Vinay Badhwar, Chief Hydrographer to the Government of India, as well as serving hydrographers, outstation ex-crew members, and veterans.
INS Sandhayak also took part in significant operations such as 'Operation Pawan' in Sri Lanka in 1987, 'Rainbow for Humanitarian Assistance' in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami, and the inaugural Indo-US HADR Exercise 'Tiger-Triumph' in 2019, according to the release.
(With PTI inputs)