INDIA. Mumbai: “Androth”, the second of 8 x Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft (ASW SWC) projects being built by M/s GRSE for the Indian Navy, was launched at M/s GRSE, Kolkata, on March 21.
The ship made her first contact with the water of the Hooghly River at the launch ceremony presided over by Vice Admiral Dinesh K. Tripathi, Flag Officer Commanding in Chief (FOC-IN-C (West). In keeping with naval tradition, Shashi Dinesh Tripathi launched the ship to the chanting of an invocation from the Atharva Veda.
Arun Lal, a former Indian cricketer and head coach of the Bengal cricket team, was the Guest of Honour for the ceremony. The ship has been named “Androth” to signify the strategic maritime importance accorded to the island of “Androth”, located about 170 nautical miles north-west of Kochi (Kerala), in the Union Territory of Lakshadweep, the official statement read.
The contract for building eight ASW SWC ships was signed between the Ministry of Defence and Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE), Kolkata, on April 29, 2019. These “Arnala”-class ships will replace the in-service “Abhay”-class ASW Corvettes of the Indian Navy. They are designed to undertake anti-submarine operations in coastal waters, Low-intensity maritime operations (LIMO), and mine-laying operations, including subsurface surveillance in littoral waters. The ASW SWC ships are 77.6 m long, have a displacement of 900 tonnes, and have a maximum speed of 25 knots.
The launch of two ships of the same class in a span of three months reinforces our resolve towards indigenous shipbuilding as part of the Prime Minister’s vision of “AatmaNirbhar Bharat” (self-reliance India). “The first ship of the project is planned to be delivered to Indian Navy by December this year. The ASW SWC ships will have over 80% indigenous content, thereby ensuring that large-scale defence production is executed by Indian manufacturing units, generating employment and capability enhancement within the country,” the statement added.
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