The Indian Navy commissioned its third Kalvari class submarine INS Karanj on Wednesday after a series of trials at the seas.
The new submarine INS Karanj will boost maritime capabilities with its sub surface to surface missiles, hi-tech sensors to neutralise threats, wire-guided torpedoes and quietness, to add stealth while launching attacks behind enemy lines.
The submarine made forays into the waters with its first sea sortie on June 2, 2018. After 100 days at sea and clocking 1,000 dived hours the submarine is ready for use in its reincarnated form, coming a long way from the original version that started operations in 1969.
Indian Navy chief Admiral Karambir Singh, Chief of the Naval Staff, and other senior officers from the Indian Navy and MoD witnessed the commissioning ceremony.
The crew of the erstwhile ‘Karanj’, a Russian-origin Foxtrot Class Submarine which was decommissioned in 2003 were also special invitees at the ceremony.
During his address, the Indian Navy Chief said, “This impetus to indigenisation and Aatmanirbhar Bharat is a fundamental tenet of the Indian Navy’s growth story and future operational capabilities.”
The submarine was commissioned by Admiral V.S. Shekhawat, a former Indian Navy Chief and also a former commanding officer of the erstwhile Karanj during the 1971 war with Pakistan.
Admiral Shekhawat also highlighted India’s push towards becoming self-reliant by saying: “We live in an India launching numerous satellites, building nuclear submarines, manufacturing vaccines for the worlds – the new Karanj is another example of it.”
With INS Karanj, three of the six superior and advanced indigenous submarines based on the Scorpene class category under Project 75 are now functional. INS Kalvari was commissioned in 2017 and INS Khanderi was commissioned in 2019.
While INS Vela is undergoing sea trials, INS Vagir was launched last year and the sixth one INS Vagsheer is under construction.
Six Scorpene-class submarines are being built in India by the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) Mumbai, under collaboration with Naval Group, France. INS Karanj would form part of the Western Naval Command’s Submarine fleet and would be another potent part of the Command’s arsenal.
This year is being celebrated as the ‘Swarnim Vijay Varsh’ which marks 50 years of the 1971 India-Pakistan war.
The old INS Karanj, commissioned on September 4, 1969 at Riga in the erstwhile USSR, also took active part in the conflict under the Command of then Cdr VS Shekhawat.
In recognition of the valiant action of her officers and crew, a number of personnel were decorated, including awarding of the Vir Chakra to the then Commanding Officer Cdr VS Shekhawat.