Reliance Defence and Engineering Limited (RDEL) today launched the first two Naval Offshore Patrol Vessels (NOPVs) at their shipyard in Pipavav, Gujarat. The ships are part of a five ship project being constructed for the Indian Navy. The two NOPVs, Shachi and Shruti were launched by Smt. Preeti Luthra, wife of Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, PVSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC; the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Western Naval Command at the RDEL Shipyard Pipavav, Gujarat.
The primary role of NOPVs is to undertake surveillance of the country’s vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) besides operational tasks such as anti-piracy patrols, fleet support operations, maritime security of offshore assets, coastal security operations, and protection of shipping lanes. The NOPVs would increase the ocean surveillance and patrolling capabilities of the Indian Navy.
The NOPVs being constructed at RDEL are patrol ships and are armed with 76mm Super Rapid Gun Mount (SRGM) system along with two 30mm AK-630M guns which provide medium range and short range offensive and defensive capabilities. The armament is remotely controlled through an electronic Fire Control System. The ships are fitted with diesel engine driven propulsion systems and can deliver speeds upto 25 knots. All ship operations are controlled by an intelligent Integrated Platform Management System which has interfaces for all operational activities onboard the ship.
Speaking on the occasion, Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, mentioned that the launch is a significant and milestone event, as these two NOPVs are the first warships to be launched by a private sector shipyard in India. He further noted that opening up of warship building to the private sector by the Indian Navy is an opportunity that the private sector must make full use of, and is an enabling factor for increased private sector participation in this key area of national capability. The CinC also mentioned that while we have constructed and commissioned a number of quality warships, our shipyards need to constantly strive to transform with an aim to achieve global standards in quality, productivity and build periods with focus on innovation, modern techniques, and processes, and all round efficiency. He added that projects need to be implemented as per planned schedule. He stated that in addition to meeting national requirements, the shipyards should also focus on export orientation.
The CinC also complimented Reliance Defence and Engg Ltd and their workforce, and the Navy’s warship overseeing and Quality Assurance teams, for their perseverance and efforts to reach this important milestone, and mentioned that he looked forward to commissioning of Shachi and Shruti into the Indian Navy in the near future.