Mumbai, July 25 (IANS) Reliance Infrastructure subsidiary Reliance Defence and Engineering Limited (RDEL) on Tuesday announced the launch of its first two Naval Offshore Patrol Vessels (NOPVs) at their shipyard in Pipavav, Gujarat.
The two NOPVs — ‘Shachi’ and ‘Shruti’ — are among five ships being constructed by RDEL under the P-21 project of the Indian Navy, the company said in a statement here.
Reliance Defence and Engineering Limited is the first private shipyard in India to obtain defence production licence and sign a contract for defence ships in 2011. The company is also engaged in construction of one training ship and 14 Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs) for the Indian Coast Guard, the statement said.
The five NOPVs are patrol ships armed with a 76 mm Super Rapid Gun Mount (SRGM) system along with two 30 mm AK-630 guns, which provide medium range and short range offensive and defensive capabilities.
The armament is remotely controlled through an electronic fire control system.
According to RDEL, the vessels are fitted with 20,000 KW diesel engine-driven propulsion systems and can deliver speeds up to 25 knots.
Speaking on the occasion, Vice Admiral Girish Luthra, Flag Officer Commanding – Western Naval Command, 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 said 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 RDEL previously has also built ships for varied clients including ice bulk carriers for a Norwegian company, offshore support vessels for ONGC and offshore deck cargo barges for NPCC-UAE.
The company has also repaired and retrofitted commercial and defence ships as well as mobile oil drilling platforms for international clients, the statement added.