The Indian Coast Guard commissioned the lead ship of a new class of offshore patrol vessels, ICGS Vikram, in a ceremony at L&T’s Defence shipyard at Kattupalli, near Chennai, on April 11.
Vikram is the first of seven vessels in the class designed and built by Larsen and Toubro under a contract from March 2015.
The keel for ICGS Vikram was laid in March 2016, meaning the vessel was built, tested and delivered in 25 months, according to the shipbuilder.
“It is a momentous occasion for L&T to become the first private Indian shipyard to deliver an in-house designed offshore patrol vessel to MoD,” Larsen & Toubro CEO and managing director S.N. Subrahmanyan said. “L&T Shipyards have achieved unmatched stellar delivery performance in prestigious MoD contracts for 54 Interceptor Boats for Coast Guard, Floating Dock project for Navy and now the OPV for Coast Guard.”
ICGS Vikram class OPVs are long-range surface ships, equipped to handle helicopter operations and operate in Indian maritime zones including island territories. The role of the OPV is to conduct coastal and offshore patrolling, policing maritime zones, control & surveillance, anti-smugglingand anti-piracy operations with limited wartime roles.
The vessels are approximately 97 meters long, displace 2,140 tons and have a range of 5,000 nautical miles. They can attain a sustained speed of up to 26 knots.
According to Larsen and Toubro, construction of follow-on OPVs is progressing ahead of schedule at Kattupalli shipyard. OPV-2 has been launched and is being readied for harbor and sea trials.