After the Pulwama attack, Indian Navy had taken out its Naval assets from exercises and deployed them at strategic positions facing Pakistan. Conventional as well as Nuclear submarines were mobilized to forward positions.
The Pakistani think-tank at that time got an impression that India might use its Naval firepower to avenge the Pulwama suicide bombing attack which killed 40 CRPF personnel.
Indian Navy command ops were keeping a track of Pakistani movements. However after the Balakot strike by the Indian Air Force a sophisticated Pakistani Agosta-class submarine PNS Saad disappeared from the Pakistani waters, a senior government source told ANI.
“The location near Karachi from where the PNS Saad vanished, it could reach the Gujarat coast in three days and the headquarters of the western fleet in Mumbai within 5 days and was seen as a major threat to the security of the country” the source said.
Anti-submarine warships and aircrafts were scrambled in hunt of the missing Pakistani submarine.
Indian Navy carried out extensive search in all the areas where the submarine could have gone in the limited timeframe. P81’s were pressed into service to locate the submarine along the coast of Gujarat and Maharashtra.
“The Navy took all precautionary measures to ensure that even if the PNS Saad had entered Indian waters, it could be forced to surface itself. Military punitive actions were also on the table” the source added.
Nuclear submarine INS Chakra had been deployed in an aggressive position along the Pakistani waters with specific instructions to hunt down PNS Saad.
Navy’s latest induction, Scorpene-class sub, INS Kalvari was also deployed.
These aggressive moves by the Indian Navy gave Pakistan clear signal that any misadventure on their part would result in a definite failure.
After 21 days of extensive search, Indian Navy finally located the PNS Saad on the western side of Pakistan. It was sent there to ensure covert capability in case of extension of hostilities in the aftermath of Balakot strike.
As per sources Navy is maintaining complete surveillance of the Arabian Sea, especially Pakistani waters.
Soon after Pulwama attack, the Navy had deployed over 60 warships in forward positions including aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya along with its battle fleet.
“The overwhelming superiority of Indian Navy in all three dimensions forced the Pakistan Navy to remain deployed close to Makran coast and not venture out in the open ocean” a statement by Indian Navy spokesperson Captain DK Sharma said at that time.
(with inputs from ANI)