Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) called 'Ship Builder to the Nation', is one of India's leading Defence public sector undertaking shipyards under the Ministry of Defence continuing their service to the nation with "Make in India" programme. They delivered the second Scorpene submarine 'KHANDERI' to the Indian Navy at an event held in Mumbai today. The Acceptance Document was signed by Cmde Rakesh Anand, Chairman & Managing Director, MDL and RAdm B Sivakumar, Chief of Staff Officer (Tech), Western Naval Command in the presence of MDL Directors and Navy personnel at MDL. The submarine would soon be commissioned into the Indian Navy. It is a milestone event for MDL.
The submarine 'KHANDERI' is named after the wide snouted Saw fish, a deadly sea predator of the great Indian Ocean. The first Submarine Khanderi was commissioned into the Indian Navy on 06th December 1968 and decommissioned on 18th October 1989 after more than 20 years of yeoman service to the nation. In true nautical tradition, she will now be 'reincarnated' by MDL to guard the vast maritime area of our nation.
Building of the Scorpene was indeed a challenge for MDL, as the complexity of the simplest of tasks increased exponentially due to all work having to be done in the most congested of spaces. This complexity was further aggravated by the stringent tolerances required to be achieved. However, all of these challenges were accepted head-on and successfully overcome by MDL, without any compromise in quality whatsoever.
The technology utilised in the Scorpene has ensured superior features of the submarine.
The Scorpene class of submarines can undertake multifarious tasks typically undertaken by any modern submarine which include anti-surface as well as anti-submarine warfare.
With the delivery of Khanderi, India further cements its position as a submarine building nation and MDL has lived up to its reputation as one of the India's leading shipyards with a capacity to meet requirements of the Indian Navy by the "Indian commercial and warship building and ship repairing industry report" released in Mumbai during March, 2018 by CRISIL.
The constructions of third Scorpene at MDL, KARANJ, was started on January 31, 2018, and is currently undergoing the rigorous phase of sea trials. The fourth Scorpene, VELA was recently launched in May 2019, and is being prepared for sea trials, whilst the remaining two submarines, VAGIR and VAGSHEER, are in various stages of outfitting. The Scorpene project would not have been achieved up to the current progress without the unconditional support and active encouragement of the Department of Defence Production (MoD).
It is also pertinent to mention that the two SSK submarines built by MDL in 1992 and 1994 are still serving Indian Navy, after more than 25 years. This is testimony to our skill and capability of MDL. Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited also achieved expertise in submarine refits by successfully executing the medium refit-cum-upgradation of all the four SSK class submarines of the Indian Navy. lt is presently carrying out the medium refit and Life Certification of INS Shishumar, the first SSK submarine.
MDL has always been in the forefront of the nation's progressive indigenous warship building programme. In fact, with the construction of the Leander and Godavari class frigates, Khukri class Corvettes, Missile Boats, Delhi and Kolkata class Destroyers, Shivalik class Stealth Frigates, the SSK submarines and the first Scorpene submarine under its belt, the history of modernday MDL almost maps the history of indigenous warship building in India.
MDL's contribution to national security and nation building continues with the P-15B Visakhapatnam class Destroyers and the P-17A class Stealth Frigates.
Recognising the challenges of the future well in time, MDL has completed an extensive mordernisation programme, at the end of which, today it is building eight Warships, SIX Submarines, in its yard, which have four drydocks, three slipways, two Wet Basins and more than sixty thousand square metres of work shop area.
Leveraging the experience, the transfer-of-technology of the Scorpene project, and with its enhanced and upgraded infrastructure, MDL is ready for undertaking construction of future submarines projects.