HE Madam Halimah Yacob, the President of Republic of Singapore, conferred the prestigious Pingat Jasa Gemilang (Tentera) [Meritorious Service Medal (Military)] on Admiral Sunil Lanba (Retd), the former Chief of Naval Staff, Indian Navy. Dr Ng Eng Hen, Defence Minister of Singapore presented the award to Admiral Sunil Lanba (Retd), on behalf of the President, in a solemn Investiture Ceremony, held on 08 Sep 22 at the Ministry of Defence, Singapore.
The award is a recognition of strong bilateral defence ties between India and Singapore as well as stellar contribution of Adm Sunil Lanba to strengthen the engagements between the two Navies. During his tenure as the Chief of Naval Staff, the Indian Navy hosted the 25th edition of Singapore-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (SIMBEX) at Visakhapatnam in Oct 2018. Adm Sunil Lanba (Retd) fondly recalled having hosted Dr Ng Eng Hen, Defence Minister of Singapore along with Rear Adm Lue Chuan Hong, the then Chief of Navy, Republic of Singapore Navy onboard INS Shakti for the concluding day of the Sea Phase of the Exercise. During the sea phase the Defence Minister of Singapore and other dignitaries witnessed, first hand, the level of interoperability achieved by the two Navies wherein high end operational manoeuvres including live missile firings were executed successfully by participating ships, aircraft and submarines of both navies. Under the leadership of Adm Sunil Lanba, several milestone defence agreements were also signed between the two Navies, including the Bilateral Agreement on Navy Cooperation and Mutual Logistics Support Agreement. Adm Lanba also hosted the inaugural Goa Maritime Conclave in 2017, in which Singapore is one of the participants. During his term as the Chief of Naval Staff, Adm Lanba had attended the International Maritime Review (IMR) commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), the International Maritime and Defence Expo (IMDEX) and the International Maritime Security Conference, co-hosted by the RSN alongside IMDEX-Asia in May 2017.
During his visit to Singapore to receive the Award, Adm Sunil Lanba (Retd) also held interactions with Lt Gen Melvyn Ong, Chief of Defence Force, Singapore Armed Forces and Rear Adm Aaron Beng, Chief of Navy, Republic of Singapore Navy. During these interactions, Adm Lanba complimented the leadership of Singapore for sustaining the momentum of bilateral engagements and shared views on new avenues of cooperation.