New Delhi: Indian Coast Guard (ICG) on Thursday launched its fourth in the series of five offshore patrol vessels (OPV), re-christened as ICG Ship “Sarthak” in an impressive ceremony at Goa Shipyard Limited.
The ship was launched by Veena Ajay Kumar, wife of defence secretary Ajay Kumar through video conference. During the launching ceremony, the global pandemic norms were followed.
During the event, defence secretary Ajay Kumar, ICG DG K Natarajan, Chairman & Managing Director of GSL and MoD dignitaries were also present at the Coast Guard HQ here.
Coincidently, the ship’s keel was laid by Dr Kumar when he was Secretary Defence Production on November 10, 2018.
The 4th Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPVs) has been designed and built indigenously by Goa Shipyard Limited in line with the Prime Minister’s vision of ‘Make in India’, the ICG said in a statement.
The Ship is fitted with state-of-the-art Navigation and Communication equipment, sensor and machinery.
The 105 m ship displaces approx 2350 tons and is propelled by two 9100 KW diesel engines designed to attain a maximum speed of 26 knots, with an endurance of 6000 Nm.
The sustenance and reach, coupled with the latest equipment and system, provides her the capability to perform the role of a command platform and undertake tasks to fulfill the Coast Guard charter.
The ship is designed to embark and carry a twin-engine helicopter, four high speed boats and one inflatable boat for swift boarding and Search & Rescue operations.
It is also capable of carrying limited pollution response equipment to undertake oil spill pollution response at sea.
Commending the Indian Coast Guard and GSL for this initiative of launching through digital means, Dr Kumar said that it was reassuring to witness the growing strength of Indian Coast Guard, and capabilities of Indian Shipbuilding industry, a strong supporting pillar for production and maintenance of ships of Indian maritime forces.
He also commended the professionalism of Goa Shipyard in meeting the timelines of the contract despite the pandemic COVID-19.
Speaking on the occasion, DG K Natarajan said that launching marks an important milestone for any ship since she touches the water for the first time, the place where she belongs through her entire service life.
He also brought out that the mere presence of Indian Coast Guard unit at sea serves dual objectives of “Deterrence” and “Reassurance”.
It deters people with ill-intent and at the same time reassures maritime community, who look up to Indian Coast Guard as “Saviours at sea”, as they are aware that Indian Coast Guard will swiftly respond to any distress call or life-threatening situation at sea.
He conveyed his appreciation to CMD, GSL and Coast Guard Refit and Production Superintendent (Goa) and their teams for their dedicated efforts which culminated in launching of this majestic ship.
Indian Coast Guard has been a pioneer in inducting indigenous assets which has enabled it to remain operationally available throughout the year.
The ship launched today, has about 70% indigenous content, thus providing the necessary fillip to the Indian shipbuilding industry and a giant leap towards achieving ‘Atmanirbar Bharat’.
It will be deployed extensively for EEZ surveillance, Coastal Security and other duties as enshrined in the Coast Guard charter of duties, to safeguard the maritime interests of the Nation.
In addition to the 05 OPV project, 52 ships are at various stages of construction at different Indian Shipyards and 16 Advanced Light Helicopters are under production at HAL, Bengaluru, which will provide the added strength to the surveillance capabilities of Indian Coast Guard to deal with the dynamic maritime challenges.