India’s push for indigenous shipbuilding resulted in the commissioning of three and launching of another four ships for the Indian Navy in 2016.
INS Chennai, a P 15A Guided Missile Destroyer, was commissioned into the Navy by the Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar at the Naval Dockyard, Mumbai on November 21.
The event marked the formal induction into the Navy of the third and final Kolkata-class destroyer.
INS Kadmatt, the second ship of Project 28 (P-28) class anti-submarine warfare corvettes, indigenously designed by the Indian Navy’s in-house organisation, Directorate of Naval Design and constructed by M/s Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited, Kolkata, was commissioned at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam on January 7.
The third commissioned vessel was the fast attack craft INS Tarmugli at a ceremony at Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam on May 23. Based at Visakhapatnam under the Naval Officer-in-Charge (Andhra Pradesh), the craft would be deployed for coastal patrol and surveillance operations along the East Coast.
The most important Indian Navy vessel launched in 2016 was the guided missile destroyer INS Mormugao, the second ship of Project 15B. Mormugao was launched on September 17 at Mazagaon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL), Mumbai. With a launch weight of 2844 tonnes, the vessel made its first contact with water during the launching ceremony.
Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Ltd, Kolkata also launched the sixth, seventh and eighth ships of LCU MK IV project in March, November and December respectively.
The fourth in the series of follow-on water jet fast attack craft (FO-WJFAC) for the Indian Navy was launched on June 30 at a ceremony at Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd (GRSE), Kolkata.
Another milestone reached by the Indian Navy were the maiden trials of the first Scorpene-class submarine INS Kalvari.
The first of the conventional propulsion Scorpene submarines, built at the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd Mumbai (MDL), went to sea on May 1 under her own propulsion for the first sea trial, off the Mumbai coast.
During the sortie, a number of preliminary tests on the propulsion system, auxiliary equipment and systems, navigation aids, communication equipment and steering gear were conducted.
According to the Indian Navy, the submarine is presently under going advanced/deep dive trials and is likely to be commissioned in early 2017.
The Indian Navy also replaced the Sea Harrier with MiG-29K fighter aircraft in INAS 300. The Sea Harriers of Indian Naval Air Squadron (INAS 300) were given a farewell at INS Hansa, Goa on May 11.