AD­MI­RAL JAYANT GAN­PAT NAD­KARNI – A TRIB­UTE

SP's NavalForces - - NEWS - ÑBy Rear Ad­mi­ral Sushil Ram­say (Retd)

Jayant Gan­pat Nad­karni was born on De­cem­ber 5, 1931 at Pune, Ma­ha­rash­tra. On com­ple­tion of Cadet­sÕ­train­ing at TS Duf­ferin at erst­while Bom­bay he joined the Royal In­dian Navy in March 1949.

He was de­puted to United King­dom (UK) to un­dergo ba­sic train­ing at the Royal Naval Col­lege, Dart­mouth. On com­ple­tion he was drafted on board the Train­ing Cruiser HNS Devon­shire and at other train­ing es­tab­lish­ments of the Royal Navy. Dur­ing his ini­tial train­ing pe­riod it­self he ex­celled in ev­ery as­pect of naval train­ing through sheer dint, hard work and de­ter­mi­na­tion and came to be rec­og­nized as a gifted In­dian naval trainee.

When he was un­der­go­ing his ini­tial train­ing in UK that a Royal Navy Train­ing Of­fi­cer once called him, “Come here, you podgy lit­tle man!Ó From that time on ÒPodgyÓbe­came his fond nick­name.

His spe­cial acu­men was soon recog­nised, and he was se­lected to un­dergo pres­ti­gious spe­cial­i­sa­tion course in Nav­i­ga­tion and Di­rec­tion in UK. On his re­turn to In­dia he was the most sought-af­ter Nav­i­ga­tor. Dur­ing Lib­er­a­tion of Goa op­er­a­tions, he was the Nav­i­gat­ing Of­fi­cer of Cruiser INS Delhi which was com­manded by Cap­tain N. Kr­ish­nan (later Vice Ad­mi­ral).

As a Com­man­der he com­manded old INS Tal­war dur­ing 1968 with such dis­tinc­tion that his ship han­dling skills, com­mand, and op­er­a­tions ca­pa­bil­i­ties are still viewed with great ad­mi­ra­tion and awe. As a Cap­tain he com­manded old INS Delhi dur­ing 1976. The ship was sent to over­see sal­vage of grounded De­stroyer INS Go­davari. That mis­sion was called Op­er­a­tion Go­davari Sal­vage (GODSAL). He was awarded Naosena Medal for his spec­tac­u­lar achieve­ment.

While he was Flag Of­fi­cer Com­mand­ing, Western Fleet his prime fo­cus was op­er­a­tional readi­ness of the Fleet ships. He al­ways en­cour­aged his Cap­tains to be bold and act with pro­fes­sional dint and prag­ma­tism. As Chief In­struc­tor (Navy) at De­fence Ser­vices Staff Col­lege, Welling­ton he along with his core team rev­o­lu­tion­alised the Staff Du­ties par­a­digms. As Chief of Per­son­nel he sin­gle-hand­edly in­tro­duced and op­er­a­tionalised sev­eral unique and mod­ern mod­els for op­er­a­tional and strate­gic stud­ies con­cepts. As the FOC-in-C, East­ern Naval Com­mand he in­fused novel doc­trines to re­vi­talise the Com­mand.

As the Vice Chief his con­tri­bu­tions were note­wor­thy. Ob­tain­ing sanc­tion for ac­qui­si­tion of Vi­raat from UK in dou­ble quick time, sanc­tion for leas­ing of Chakra, the first nu­clear sub­ma­rine from former USSR, ob­tain­ing Govt. sanc­tions for Project Se­abird, Naval Academy at Ezhi­mala, etc.

He as­sumed the helm of In­dian Navy on De­cem­ber 1, 1987, as the 14th Chief of the Naval Staff. Dur­ing his watch as CNS a spec­tac­u­lar feat was ac­com­plished with per­fec­tion through mil­i­tary in­ter­ven­tion by all three ser­vices and the In­dian Naval Ship di­verted to thwart the at­tempt by the mer­ce­naryÕs coup in the Mal­dives dur­ing 1988. This sin­gu­lar in­ter­ven­tion pro­pelled the im­age of In­dia as the emerg­ing power and re­sul­tantly oc­cu­py­ing the prime po­si­tion on the cover of the Time mag­a­zine.

In his trib­ute to Late Ad­mi­ral Nad­karni, Ad­mi­ral Arun Prakash, former CNS said, ÒThis doughty Maratha Ad­mi­ral, surely had the blood of Shivaji and An­gre cours­ing through his veins; it showed in his prin­ci­ples, pro­fes­sion­al­ism and a clear vi­sion for the In­dian Navy. Un-flam­boy­ant and mod­est to a fault, he earned the NavyÕs gen­uine re­spect and af­fec­tion.Ó

Ad­mi­ral Jayant Nad­karni was the proud re­cip­i­ent of PVSM, AVSM, NM, VSM.

May his blessed soul rest in eter­nal peace.

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