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Navy to commission India-built stealth guided missile destroyer

Mormugao is the second warship under the navy’s Project-15B under which two more warships will be delivered by 2025.

NEW DELHI: The Indian Navy announced on Friday that the latest stealth guided missile destroyer, Mormugao, will be commissioned on December 18 at the Naval Dockyard in Mumbai, enhancing its "mobility, reach, and flexibility" to carry out missions in the Indian Ocean and beyond. Rajnath Singh, the defence minister, will be present for the commissioning.

According to officials familiar with the navy's modernization, Mormugao is the second vessel to be delivered as part of Project-15B, which also calls for the delivery of two additional warships by 2025. In Mumbai last November, the first P-15B warship, Visakhapatnam, was commissioned. The navy's internal design team, Warship Design Bureau, created the destroyers of the Visakhapatnam class.

“The majestic ship measures 163 m in length, 17 m in breadth, has a displacement of 7400 tonnes, and can rightfully be regarded as one of the most potent warships to have been constructed in India,” the navy said in a statement. It is propelled by four gas turbines, and capable of achieving speeds in excess of 30 knots.

The commissioning of Mormugao comes as the navy strives to achieve complete independence by 2047, when India will mark its 100th anniversary of independence. Additionally, it occurs at a time when China is attempting to exert more influence in the high seas and its warships are increasingly cruising into the Indian Ocean, where combat-capable Indian warships are constantly patrolling the area for any odd activity.

According to the navy, Mormugao is stocked with high-tech weapons like surface-to-surface and surface-to-air missiles, has a cutting-edge surveillance radar that feeds target information to the gunnery weapon systems, and is well-equipped for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) with locally developed rocket launchers, torpedo launchers, and ASW helicopters. It is capable of engaging in NBC (nuclear, biological, and chemical) warfare.

The ship has an indigenous content of 75% and reflects the country’s focus on the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ abhiyan (self-reliant India campaign), the navy said.

42 of the 44 ships and submarines currently under construction are being built in Indian shipyards, significantly advancing our efforts toward "Aatmanirbhar Bharat," with a strong focus on indigenization and self-reliance. AoN (approval of necessity) has also been granted for 55 ships and submarines, all of which will be built in Indian shipyards, according to the announcement.

AoN by the defence acquisition council is the initial step toward purchasing military equipment according to Indian defence procurement regulations.

The government's major objective is the indigenous development of military equipment. In order to support domestic defence manufacture, India also placed a gradual import ban on 411 various weapons and systems during the past two years. Over the course of the next five to six years, these weapons and platforms are anticipated to undergo phased indigenization.

Furthermore, the government has allocated 84,598 crore, or 68% of the military's capital acquisition budget for 2022–2023—for the purchase of weapons and systems made in the country. The Center had allocated 64% (or 70,221 crore) of the military's capital acquisition budget for the domestic sector in 2021–2022, and 58% (or 51,000 crore) of the capital budget in 2020–2021. The allocation for local defence purchases has increased significantly over the last three years.

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Website: Edited by: Satyavrat Singh

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