INS Sandhayak (Yard 3025), the first Survey Vessel Large (SVL) ship, was commissioned into the Indian Navy in the presence of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh at a ceremony held at the Naval Dockyard, Visakhapatnam on Saturday.
The primary role of the ship is to carry out full scale hydrographic surveys of ports, harbours, navigational channels/routes, coastal areas and deep seas, towards enabling safe marine navigation. In its secondary role, the ship will be capable of undertaking a range of naval operations, the ministry of defence (MoD) said in a statement.
The MoD informed that the ship has a displacement of 3,400 tons and an overall length of 110 meters with a beam of 16m. INS Sandhayak is equipped with state-of-the-art hydrographic equipment including Deep and Shallow Water Multi-Beam Echo-Sounders and satellite-based positioning systems.
Singh termed the commissioning as historic, exuding confidence that INS Sandhayak will further strengthen India's role as a superpower in the Indo-Pacific region and help the Indian Navy in maintaining peace and security.
The Defence Minister said, “The ocean is vast and bottomless. The more we are able to explore its elements, the more our knowledge will expand, and we will become stronger. The more we gather information about the ocean, its ecology, its flora and fauna, the closer we will get to achieving our objectives. The more we know about the ocean, the more meaningfully we will be able to fulfil our strategic interests."
Singh assured that those involved in maritime piracy and smuggling will not be tolerated under any circumstances, describing it as the pledge of ‘New India’.
He lauded the Indian Navy for providing security not only to the Indian ships, but also those from friendly countries. He referred to the recent drone attack on a British ship in the Gulf of Aden which resulted in the oil tankers catching fire. He commended the Indian Navy for its prompt response in extinguishing the fire, stating that the effort was recognised and appreciated by the world.
Singh praised the Indian Navy for averting five piracy attempts and assisting ships attacked by drones and missiles in the last few days, in addition to rescuing 80 fishermen/marines.
He said, “The Indian Navy in the Indian Ocean region is facilitating safe trade, while ensuring peace and prosperity. Many defence experts are calling this the rise of a superpower. This is our culture - to protect everyone."
Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral R Hari Kumar stated, “Be it the mighty aircraft carrier Vikrant, the deadly destroyers of Visakhapatnam Class, the versatile Nilgiri class Frigates, the stealthy Kalvari class submarines, the nimble Shallow Water ASW Craft or the specialised Diving Support Vessels - we are carefully crafting a balanced ‘Aatmanirbhar’ force in service of an ascendant Bharat."
Admiral R Hari Kumar asserted that 64 out of 66 ships and submarines under order are being built in Indian shipyards. This means that the Navy will invest thousands of crores in this sector, enhancing capacity of the shipyards, and capabilities of the workers as well as those employed in ancillary industries, he emphasised.
He said, “Not only India but the entire world has seen the effect of Shri Rajnath Singh’s instructions in the last four-five weeks. The Indian Navy will not stop until the Indian Ocean becomes completely open, safe and free. We are ready."
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