Indian Navy’s two frontline warships – ‘Surat’ and ‘Udaygiri’ were launched at Mazagon Docks Limited (MDL), Mumbai on May 17, by Defence Minister, Rajnath Singh.
‘Surat’ is the fourth Guided Missile Destroyer of the P15B class, while ‘Udaygiri’ is the second Stealth Frigate of P17A class. Both warships have been designed in-house by the Directorate of Naval Design (DND) and built at MDL, Mumbai.
The Defence Minister in his address, described the warships as an embodiment of the Government’s unwavering commitment to enhance the country’s maritime capability, with a focus on achieving ‘Aatmanirbharta’, at a time when the world is witnessing disruption in the global supply chain due to COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
He congratulated the MDL for continued ship production activities despite the pandemic and for meeting the strategic requirements of the Indian Navy in the current geo-political scenario and that the two warships will add might to the Indian Navy’s arsenal and represent to the world India’s strategic strength as well as the power of self-reliance.
“The warships will be among the most technologically advanced missile carriers in the world, that will cater to the present as well as future requirements. In the times to come, we will not only fulfil our own needs but will also meet the shipbuilding requirements of the world,” he said.
He also lauded the Indian Navy for responsibly discharging its duties of keeping the Indo-Pacific region open, safe and secure. “The Indo-Pacific region is important for the economy of the whole world. India is a responsible maritime stakeholder in the region. We support consensus-based principles and peaceful, open, rule-based and stable maritime order. Being an important country in this region, it is the primary objective of our Navy to keep the Indo-Pacific open, safe and secure,” he said.
Rajnath Singh was of the view that the ever-evolving security scenario in the Indian Ocean and the Indo-Pacific region would demand an even more important role for the Indian Navy in the times to come. He called for devising policies which focus on bolstering the country’s presence in the region, its role during disasters, economic well-being and carrying forward the foreign policies.
Asserting that global security, border disputes and maritime dominance have led nations around the world to modernise their military, the Defence Minister exhorted the public and the private sectors to make full use of the capabilities by taking advantage of the Government’s policies and contribute towards making India an indigenous shipbuilding hub. He assured of all possible support of the Government in this endeavour.