The parade was held to mark the graduation of the 94th Helicopter Conversion Course.
A special passing out parade, maintaining social distancing, was held at the Naval Air Station Rajali at Arakkonam, near Chennai, in Tamil Nadu today.
The parade was held to mark the graduation of the 94th Helicopter Conversion Course (HCC) and eight Navy pilots were awarded with the prestigious "Wings of Gold" by Commodore Shreerang Joglekar, Commanding Officer INS Rajali, a Defence release said.
"A special passing out parade adhering to all safety and social distancing norms was held at the Naval Air Station Rajali, Arakkonam," it said.
The pilots underwent rigorous flying and ground training for 20 weeks at Indian Naval Air Squadron 561, the Helicopter Training School (HTS).
The release said due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown, training activities for the pilots at HTS also had to be "severely restricted keeping in mind the safety aspects against COVID-19."
New procedures for conduct of safe flying operations, adhering to all the safety precautions, were followed.
These included "daily sanitisation of aircraft and squadron premises while maintaining a safe and conducive training environment adhering to social distancing norms," it said.
During training, the pilots are introduced to several nuances of helicopter flying and undergo a "challenging" syllabus including navigation, night flying and operations over sea, it said.
The new pilots will be appointed to various front-line operational units of the Indian Navy and take up missions like Search and Rescue (SAR), Reconniassance and anti-piracy patrols, the release added.