MoD nod for making six gen-next patrol vessels in India

MoD nod for making six gen-next patrol vessels in India

Reuters file photo for representation.

The Defence Ministry on Monday approved construction of half-a-dozen next-generation naval offshore patrol vessels that would be constructed at an Indian shipyard at a cost of Rs 4,941 crore.

The approval was given by the Defence Acquisition Council headed by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

The next generation OPVs will be built in indigenous shipyards and fitted with state-of-the-art sensor suite with increased endurance. “They are called next generation OPV because they would be having better sensors and radars,” said an officer.

These platforms will strengthen maritime security by undertaking a multitude of operational roles both in blue water and littorals.

Their role would include seaward defence, protection of offshore assets, maritime interdiction operations, search and seizure operations, surveillance missions, mine warfare, anti-piracy missions, counter infiltration operations, anti-poaching/trafficking operations, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief and search and rescue missions, the defence ministry said in a statement.

Indian Navy currently operates four Sarya class and six Sukanya class OPVs. In 2011, Navy gave a Rs 2,974 crore contract to private shipyard Pipavav for construction of five OPVs. The yard has missed several deadlines and now is expected to deliver them between 2018 and 2020 – years behind the original schedule.