National Defence Bureau
Panaji, February 21, 2019
The 1st Vessel of the indigenous Project for 05 Offshore Patrol Vessels for Indian Coast Guard was launched by Defence Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman today at Goa Shipyard Limited and named the vessel as ‘Sachet’. The Vessel was launched with much fanfare at GSL in distinguished presence of Union Minister of State (I/C) Ministry for AYUSH Shripad Naik, Member of Rajya Sabha, Vinay D Tendulkar, Director General Coast Guard – Rajendra Singh, PTM, TM, Coast Guard Commander (Western Seaboard) – ADG K Natarajan, PTM, TM, Flag Officer Goa Area Rear Admiral Philipose G Pynumootil, NM, Chairman and Managing Director of Goa Shipyard Limited – Commodore BB Nagpal, and various other dignitaries.
The ongoing shipbuilding project for 05 Offshore Patrol Vessels is one of the biggest orders being executed by GSL for the Indian Coast Guard. This indigenous Project was launched by the Prime Minister on 13 Nov 2016 and the keel of 1st Vessel was laid on 20 Mar 2017 by ADG K Natarajan, PTM, TM. The vessel is in advanced stage of outfitting and will be ready for delivery by Jan 2020.
Entirely designed in-house by the professionals of GSL, these OPVs will form a formidable part of the Coast Guard Fleet and used for protection of Exclusive Economic Zone of territorial water of the Nation. These vessels will be fitted with most modern and technologically advanced machinery and computerized controls systems, making them the most advanced Patrol Vessels in service with the Indian Coast Guard, on delivery. These 2400 tonnes vessels will be equipped with features like Quick Response Boats for rescue and anti piracy, Gunnery simulators and many more advanced features. The hull would be the most efficient form designed by GSL and would provide for fuel efficiency, crew comfort and excellent sea keeping qualities.
Recognising the excellent efforts and achievements of Goa Shipyard, Defence Minister congratulated the personnel of Goa Shipyard and Coast Guard for the launching of the Vessel. She acknowledged that tremendous contribution of Goa Shipyard in indigenous shipbuilding, catering to the acquisition requirements of the Indian maritime forces. She also commended the efforts of Shipyard in export of 02 Advanced OPVs to Sri Lanka and 02 FPVs and 11 FICs to Mauritius. She further stressed on the need to capitalize on the consistent superior production performance of Shipyard and cater for the captive requirements of Indian Defence Services and also reach out for exports. She also assured full support of the Ministry of defence in all the endeavours of the Shipyard.
Speaking on the occasion DGCG Shri Rajendra Singh also praised GSL for its professionalism in persistent delivery of quality ships, within the contractual delivery timelines. He lauded that bonhomie and partnership between Coast Guard and GSL in design and construction of significant number of vessels for the Indian Coast Guard.
On this Occasion Cmde BB Nagpal, CMD GSL said “In line with the Shipyard’s tradition of delivering on time, we are confident to deliver the 1st Vessel, launched today, by Jan 2019, in less than 3 years from keel laying. Our endevour has been to maximise the indigenous content on these ships and I am happy to state that more than 70% indigenisation has been achieved for these ships.” Expressing his gratitude to the Ministry of Defence, CMD said “We are extremely thankful to MoD for entrusting Goa Shipyard with the construction of 02 Frigates for the Indian Navy and assure that the project will be delivered in time.”
Shailesh Kumar is an independent journalist with over 15 years of experience in crime, political and defence reporting for leading media brands including Star News, India TV and NewsX. He is the founder editor of defence and security news portal, National Defence.