New Delhi, Aug 25 : Ministry of Defence (MoD) on Friday has signed a contract with Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL), Visakhapatnam for acquisition of five Fleet Support Ships (FSS) for the Indian Navy.
MoD said that the overall cost of the project is around Rs 19,000 crore. The Cabinet Committee on Security had approved the acquisition of these ships during its meeting on August 16, 2023.
MoD official said that it would be a major boost towards achieving the goal of self-reliance in defence manufacturing and these ships will be indigenously designed and constructed by HSL, Visakhapatnam.
MoD said that the fleet support ships will be employed for replenishing ships at sea with fuel, water, ammunition and stores, enabling the Indian Naval Fleet to operate for prolonged periods without returning to harbour.
These ships would enhance the strategic reach and mobility of the Fleet. The induction of these ships will significantly enhance the blue water capability of the Indian Navy. The ships can also be deployed for evacuation of people and human assistance and disaster relief (HADR) operations, the official added. MoD said that the Fleet Support Ships of 44,000 Tons will be the first-of-its kind to be built in India by an Indian Shipyard. This project will generate employment of nearly 168.8 lakh mandays over a period of eight years. The construction of these ships will provide a new dimension to the Indian shipbuilding Industry and encourage active participation of associated industries, including MSMEs.
MoD said that with majority of the equipment and systems being sourced from indigenous manufacturers, these vessels will be a proud flag bearer of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ in consonance with the ‘Make in India’ initiatives of the Government.
On Thursday, the Defence Acquisition Council accorded Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for capital acquisition proposals worth approximately Rs 7,800 crore.
MoD said that this decision has been taken to enhance the efficiency of the Indian Air Force, the DAC has granted AoN for procurement and installation of Electronic Warfare (EW) Suite on Mi-17 V5 Helicopters under Buy (Indian-IDDM) category which will enhance better survivability of Helicopters. The EW Suite will be procured from Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL).
The DAC has also accorded AoN for procurement of Ground-Based Autonomous System for mechanised infantry and armoured regiments which will enable various operations like unmanned surveillance, logistic delivery of ammunition, fuel and spares and casualty evacuation in the battle field.