Terming as the imperative step towards achieving ‘Atmanirbharta’ in the defence sector, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh dedicated the indigenously built Indian Coast Guard (ICG) Ship ‘Vigraha’ to the nation.
The Defence Minister mentioned the ship as a perfect example of a successful partnership between public and private sectors towards realising the dream of a self-reliant India.
“The commissioning of this ship showcases significant improvement in our coastal defense capability as also our ever-increasing ‘self-reliance’ in the defense sector,” Rajanth Singh said in a tweet.
Decoding ICGS Vigraha: The landmark offshore patrol vessel
Designed and built indigenously by M/s Larsen & Toubro Ship Building Ltd, ICGS Vigraha is equipped with advanced technology Radars, Navigation and Communication Equipment, Sensor and Machinery capable of operating in tropical sea conditions.
The 98 meters long vessel is armed with a 40/60 Bofors gun and fitted with two 12.7 mm Stabilised Remote Control Gun (SRCG) with Fire Control System along with Integrated Bridge System (IBS), Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), Automated Power Management System (APMS) and High-Power External Firefighting (EFF) system.
Notably, ICGS Vigraha is designed to carry one Twin Engine Helicopter and four high speed boats for swift boarding operation, search and rescue operations. The ship will be a part of the Coast Guard Eastern fleet, will be deployed extensively for EEZ surveillance and other duties as enshrined in the Coast Guard Charter, to safeguard the maritime interests of India.
With the commission of Vigraha, the Indian Coast Guard fleet now has 157 Ships and 66 Aircraft in its inventory.
Taking Public-Private Partnership to new heights
The Made-in-India ship delineates the significant improvement in India’s coastal defense ecosystem along with enhanced public-private partnership relations.
It is noteworthy that for the first time in the history of Indian defence, contracts for more than seven vessels have been signed with private firms. Additionally, within the span of seven years of signing the agreement in 2015, the commissioning of all seven vessels has been completed with the induction of Vigraha.
The paradigm shift in the global security ecosystem
Addressing the event at the commissioning of the Indian Coast Guard Ship (ICGS) ‘Vigraha,’ the last of the seven Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs), the Defence Minister said that in the next two years, the expenditure on security around the globe will reach $2.1 trillion.
On the changing global security environment, the Defence Minister mentioned that countries around the globe are strengthening their defence power and the Indian government with a plethora of reforms, is ensuring that India is not left behind.
Some of the reforms include simplification of the process of licensing in the defence sector, Boosting the military exports, encouraging private sectors, establishing defence corridors, accelerating the new Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020.
Riding on these reforms, Rajnath Singh exuded confidence that due to these initiatives India will soon become a defence manufacturing hub that will cater to not just the domestic needs but to the whole world.
Indian Coast Guard efforts in ‘Mission Sagar’
Rajnath Singh took special concision of the Indian Coast Guard’s efforts towards realising the vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for All in the Region) orchestrated by PM Modi.
The Defence Minister recalled the Indian Coast Guard’s role in extending help to neighboring nations in line with the spirit of inclusiveness and lauded the role of Coast Guard in providing pro-active help in saving very large crude carrier MT ‘New Diamond’ last year, and the cargo ship MV ‘X-Press Pearl’ this year.