Celebrating Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and continuing its march to achieve self-reliance in Warship building, Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Ltd., (GRSE) laid the Keel of 5th of eight Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Crafts (ASWSWCs) today at GRSE Main Works Unit Kolkata. The design of these ships has been done completely in-house by GRSE.
Shri V.L Kantha Rao, Additional Secretary and Director General (Acquisition), Ministry of Defence attended the event virtually as chief guest. Vice Admiral Kiran Deshmukh, Controller of Warship Production and Acquisition and other senior officials from Naval Headquarters also participated virtually. Shri V K Saxena, Chairman and Managing Director, GRSE, Shri Sanjeev Nayyar, Director (Shipbuilding), GRSE, Shri PR Hari, Director (Personnel), GRSE, Shri RK Dash, Director (Finance), GRSE along with other senior officials of Indian Navy and GRSE were present at Main Works Unit Kolkata.
The keel laying ceremony marks a centuries old tradition heralding the start of a ship’s construction at site. As per GRSE’s custom, the keel laying of 5th ASWSWC was done by Shri Shyamal Kumar Sikdar, a senior operative of GRSE.
The 5th Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft is a part of eight such warships being built by GRSE. The order was bagged through a competitive bidding process. The primary role of shallow water craft is to conduct Anti-submarine operations in coastal waters, Low intensity maritime operations and Mine laying operations. The Craft is designed for a Deep Displacement of 750 Tons, Complement of 57 and capable of full scale Sub Surface Surveillance of Coastal Waters, Search Attack Unit (SAU) and Coordinated ASW operations with Aircraft. These Vessels are propelled by Water Jets capable of reaching maximum speed of 25 Knots and are compact and loaded with anti-submarine weapons (Light Weight Torpedoes, ASW rockets and Combat Management System).
Speaking on the occasion, Shri V.L Kantha Rao, said that the Acquisition Wing of the Ministry of Defence has formulated several measures to speed up the procurement in the Armed Forces. He complimented GRSE on its performance in shipbuilding and highlighted the tremendous shipbuilding opportunities in immediate future for Indian Shipbuilders. Shri V K Saxena stated that GRSE has delivered 70 ships to the Indian Navy and 15 more are at various stages of construction by GRSE. Shri Saxena acknowledged the support of the Indian Navy and the Warship Overseeing Team at Kolkata towards the achievement of several milestones by GRSE. He complimented team GRSE for achieving today’s milestone within 15 days of launching the Survey Vessel Large and that too at the same building berth.
Apart from building eight ASWSWCs for the Indian Navy, the Shipyard is currently executing indigenous shipbuilding projects which include three Advanced Frigates under Project 17A, four Survey Vessels (Large) and one Fast Patrol Vessel for the Indian Coast Guard. With its core emphasis on exports, the shipyard is also building ships for the Republic of Guyana and a government agency of Bangladesh.