Navy to commission INS Vela, fourth Scorpene-class submarine, tomorrow in Mumbai

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Indian Navy will commission for INS Vela, the fourth stealth Scorpene class submarine, in Mumbai on Thursday. The submarine was constructed at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) Mumbai in collaboration with M/s Naval Group, France, and was delivered to the Indian Navy on November 9, 2021. A total of six submarines are to be built under the project.

“It’s a proud moment for all of us. It has an indigenous set of batteries and has an advanced communication suite of indigenous make so it has taken the concept of ‘AatmaNirbhar Bharat’ further,” Captain Anish Mathew, Commanding Officer of INS Vela, told news agency ANI.

Launched in May 2019, INS Vela has completed all major harbour and sea trials including weapon and sensor trials since then despite Covid-induced restrictions. Pointing to the intricate activity of submarine construction, the ministry of defence had earlier said the difficulty is compounded when all types of equipment are required to be miniaturised.

The Scorpene-class submarines are meant to undertake multifarious tasks typically including anti-surface as well as anti-submarine warfare.

MDL is one of India’s leading shipyards with a capacity to meet the requirements of the Indian Navy. According to the defence ministry, MDL is ready for undertaking the construction of future submarines by leveraging the experience and the transfer of technology of the Scorpene project.

Last week, INS Visakhapatnam, the first stealth-guided missile destroyer ship of Project 15B, was commissioned at the naval dock in Mumbai in the presence of defence minister Rajnath Singh. In a step towards Aatmanirbhar Bharat, the commissioning reaffirmed India’s presence amongst an elite group of nations with the capability to design and build advanced warships.

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