The Indian Navy has deployed an offshore patrol vessel, the INS Savitri, to the Seychelles and Mauritius in a bid to strengthen anti-piracy patrols in the region.

The warship deployed with an armed Chetak helicopter and marine commandos will conduct surveillance operations in the exclusive economic zones (EEZs) of the Seychelles and Mauritius until early January 2010.

Indian Navy spokesperson commander PVS Satish said INS Savitri will be deployed in close coordination with the ships and aircraft of Seychelles and Mauritius coast guards.

The 101.1m-long and 11.5m-wide Sukanya Class warship has a full load displacement capacity of 1,890kg and can accommodate 140 crew and cruise at a speed of 21kt.

India’s marine commandos will also participate in a combat exercise codenamed Limitier performing counter-insurgency operations in cooperation with Indian Army special forces and Gorkha soldiers.