New Delhi, Nov 20: In a big boost to the Indian Navy, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will be the Chief Guest at the commissioning ceremony of INS Visakhapatnam, the first ship of Project 15B, informed the Indian Navy on Saturday. The commissioning ceremony is scheduled to take place on November 21 at the Naval Dockyard of Mumbai.
Also, Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Karambir Singh will be the Chief Guest at the commissioning ceremony of the fourth submarine of the Kalvari Class - Submarine Vela on November 28. "We are ready for INS Visakhapatnam's commissioning. Our indigenous content is the highest today. After commissioning, we will continue with a few more trials and will be one with the fleet," said Captain Birendra Singh Bains, Commanding Officer (designate) of INS Visakhapatnam.
The Commissioning of 'Visakhapatnam' and 'Vela' are major milestones showcasing the "indigenous capacity to build complex combat platforms". This will enhance our capacity and firepower to address the threats both in the above water and underwater domains.
"Visakhapatnam class ships, built with indigenous steel, are follow-on of the Kolkata class destroyers commissioned in the last decade. Designed by Directorate of Naval Design and built by M/s Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd, Mumbai. The four ships are named after major cities of the country, viz. Visakhapatnam, Mormugao, Imphal and Surat," read the official statement.
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As per the statement, the commissioning of Visakhapatnam will reaffirm India's presence amongst an elite group of nations with the capability to design and build advanced warships. Apart from myriad indigenous equipment in the 'Float' and 'Move' categories, the destroyer is also installed with many major indigenous weapons such as Indigenous Medium Range Surface to Air Missile Systems by BEL, Bangalore, Surface to Surface Missiles by Brahmos Aerospace, Torpedo Tubes and Launchers by L&T, and Gun Mount by BHEL. The overall indigenous content of the project is approx 75 per cent.
Further, the release mentioned, Vela is the fourth submarine of the Kalvari Class. The Indian Navy will thus obtain yet another potent platform in its arsenal. The submarine building is a sophisticated exercise involving placing small components sequentially and logically inside the submarine as the space within is extremely constricted. Very few countries possess this ability in their industrial capacity.
India has proven its capability to build our own Submarines for the past twenty-five years. Both Warship and Submarine building has immensely benefited the Indian industry as they too are able to align to the stringent quality control standards that these platforms demand.
The commissioning ceremonies, also coincide with the 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav' and 'Swarnim Vijay Varsh' celebrations. The inductions of Visakhapatnam and Vela, are thus not only enhance our defence preparedness but are also our humble tribute to the sacrifices made by our freedom fighters for the independence of the nation and our brave soldiers during the 1971 war, says Indian Navy.