New York Times - Ships and Shipping

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

4 More French Submarines to Meet Indian Navy’s Requirement

Published: 06th October 2015 04:01 AM
Last Updated: 06th October 2015 04:01 AM

NEW DELHI:  France may get further orders to supply conventional submarines, in order to meet the Indian Navy’s critical requirement of underwater capability. According to sources in  South Block, the French firm DCNS, which is already building six Scorpene submarines in partnership with Mumbai-based Mazagaon Dock Limited, is likely to get a follow-on order for more such submarines. The Indian Navy has been struggling to maintain its depleting submarine fleet, especially after a spate of accidents last year.
India’s submarine strength is now officially down to 15, which includes nine Kilo class (EKMs), four German-designed HDWs (SSKs) and one Akula class nuclear-powered submarine (SSN) on lease from Russia (since 2012) and the INS Arihant, the country’s first indigenous nuclear-powered submarine, which is undergoing various levels of sea trials.
The defence PSU MDL, which is developing the Scorpene-class submarine Kalvari, undocked in April this year, is carrying out sea trials. It is likely to be commissioned in September next year and thereafter, the remaining five submarines will follow every nine months, as per the revised schedule. The remaining five boats of Project 75 would be delivered to the Navy by 2020 and would form the core of the Navy’s submarine arm for the next two decades.
While the first four are conventional submarines, the last two are to be equipped with the Air Independent Propulsion (AIP) system, which will enable the vessel to stay underwater for longer. The process of acquiring six more submarines under Project 75 is yet to kick off, as the government is still in the process of finalising the shipyard.

Source: The New Indian Express.

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