After a hiatus of almost two decades, Indian Navy on December 14 received its first conventional submarine INS Kalvari, from the hands of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Naval Dockyard, Mumbai.
“After almost 20 years, India is getting such a submarine; it is a privilege for me to dedicate INS Kalvari to the country,” said the Prime Minister in his speech at the ceremony.
Calling the vessel as an excellent example of ‘Make in India’, Modi said that the induction of Kalvari in Navy is an important step towards strengthening and expansion of the Indian Navy.
Thanking France for its support, Prime Minister called the project as an outstanding example of Indo-French strategic partnership.
INS Kalvari, first of the six Scorpene submarines were ordered from the French naval ship builder Naval Group under Project 75, is a state of the art diesel attack submarine contract built at public sector shipyard Mazagon Dock (MDL), Mumbai.
The second vessel of this class INS Khanderi is expected to enter service in middle of next year and third INS Karanj, is ready for launch, will follow by 2019.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony of the vessel, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman congratulated MDL for restarting submarine production and thanked the “yard workers for their contribution for this spectacular achievement.”
"Peace in Indian Ocean, which is the lifeline of global trade, is better off with INS Kalvari and her follow on submarines.”
"Submarines are lethal, potent and cutting edge platforms in modern day warfare. Yet they are most essential for peace and deterrence for our nation,” Sitaraman added.
Hervé Guillou, Chairman of Naval Group shares the joy and expressed: “Naval Group is proud to have contributed to the commissioning of INS Kalvari, which achieves our vision to strengthen strategic partnership in India. Naval Group has been operating in India for more than decade and along with its partner MDL, is fully committed to the ‘Make in India’ initiative paving way for self-reliance of Indian Navy. We are convinced that such partnerships based on trust and quality is the key to long term success for Indian defence industry and its sovereignty.”
Khanderi, the second of Kalvari class submarines, was launched in Mumbai on 12 January 2017 and is undergoing several phases of sea trials. All the remaining submarines are in different stages of construction and will be delivered at a rate of at least one every 12 months.”
In 2005 through India France government to government deal French naval ship builder Naval Group, formerly DCNS, was contracted for six submarines through a License Agreement under Transfer of Technology. MDL was selected as Indian shipyard to build the six submarines. To execute the project, Naval Group created a 100 per cent Indian subsidiary and also set up a dedicated team at MDL.
Fifty years back on December 8, 1967, India commissioned its first Russian made, Froxtrot class diesel-electric submarine INS Kalvari which was decommissioned on May 31, 1996. The construction of Kalvari began with the first cutting of steel at MDL on December 14, 2006.
It is the first Indian naval vessel to be built using modular construction. The wielding of the five separate sections, which constitute the whole vessel, better known as ‘Boot Together’ was completed on July 30, 2014.
The submarine was ‘launched’ and christened as ‘Kalvari’- Malayalam for Tiger hark - on October 27, 2015 and was first put to sea on May 1, 2016.
Subsequent to the launch, she went through extensive sea trials and weapon fiting including Navy’s maiden SM 39 Exocet combat missile firing on March 2, 2017.
On completion of trials, the boat was delivered to the Indian Navy by MDL on September 21, 2017.
Navy has recently floated a tender for another six submarines to be made in India through strategic partnership under Project 75(I).