National Defence Bureau,
New Delhi, 12 January 2019
Indian Coast Guard Ship Annie Besant and Amrit Kaur, second and third in the series of five Fast Patrol Vessels were commissioned at Kolkata on 12 Jan 20 by Dr Ajay Kumar, Defence Secretary, Govt of India in the presence of Director General Krishnaswamy Natarajan, PTM, TM, Director General Indian Coast Guard, Rear Admiral VK Saxena, IN(Retd), CMD, M/s GRSE and other senior dignitaries of the Central and State Government.
Indian Coast Guard Ship Annie Besant has been named in honour of Ms Annie Besant, an esteemed socialist and her eminent achievements towards the nation. Ms Annie Besant was a theosophist, women’s rights activist, writer, orator and supporter of Indian freedom. She was also a philanthropist and a prolific author who had written over three hundred books & pamphlets and contributed in foundation of Banaras Hindu University. In 1916, she established the Indian Home Rule League, of which she became President. The ship is being based at Chennai under the operational and administrative control of Commander, Coast Guard Region East.
Indian Coast Guard Ship Amrit Kaur derives her name from Ms Raj Kumari Amrit Kaur who belonged to the ruling family of Kapurthala, Punjab. She took an active part in Salt Satyagraha and Quit India Movement. She served the Independent India as its first Health Minister. She worked towards upliftment of Harijan and progress of women. She was the founder member of All India Womens’ Conference and founder President of Indian Council for Child Welfare. The ship is being based at Haldia under the operational and administrative control of Commander, Coast Guard Region North East.
The ships are 48.9 mtrs long & 7.5 mtrs wide with a displacement of 308 Tons. The ships are capable of achieving maximum speed of 34 Knots, powered with MTU 4000 Series Engines and propelled by three 71S type III Kamewa waterjet of Rolls Royce. The ships are built indigenously by M/s Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE) Ltd, Kolkata.
The ships are capable of undertaking multi-faceted tasks such as surveillance, interdiction, Search & Rescue and Medical Evacuation. The ships are fitted with state-of-the-art technology, navigation & communication equipment, sensors and machinery. The ships are also equipped with Bofors 40/60 gun and 12.7 mm SRCG (Stablized Remote Controlled Gun) for enhancing the fighting efficiency of the ship. The ships carry one RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) and one Gemini Boat each for swift boarding and Search & Rescue operations.
Both the ships have complement of 05 Officers and 34 men each. ICGS Annie Besant is commanded by Commandant (JG) Sunny Deo while ICGS Amrit Kaur is commanded by Commandant (JG) Himanshu Mishra.
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.