|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
Israel-built ship commissioned in Indian Navy
October 09, 2003 13:01 IST
Last Updated: October 09, 2003 18:08 IST
The Indian Navy's coastal defence capabilities have been bolstered with the commissioning of an Israel-built ship, the fastest in its fleet, at a ceremony in Mumbai on Thursday.
Indian Naval Fast Attack Craft (INFAC T-82), built by Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), was commissioned by Flag Officer Commanding-in-chief (Western Naval Command) Vice Admiral Arun Prakash at Naval Dockyard in south Mumbai.
"With the commissioning of this craft, the Indian Navy's offensive and defensive capabilities in offshore and inshore areas will receive a big boost," Prakash said.
Explaining the features of the small craft, which can operate at a speed of 40 knots for 550 miles, Prakash said its night vision device can target an adversary from 2km inshore. It has a very shallow draught (area below waterline), which makes it ideal for entering shallow areas, where bigger naval vessels cannot enter.
It can be used in counter insurgency, anti-smuggling, search and rescue operations, and also to protect offshore platforms like Bombay High.
INFAC T-82 has a crew of two officers and 12 sailors and will be commanded by Lt Sharad Agarwal.
"Keeping in view the present security scenario, two stealth frigates INS Talwar and INS Trishul were recently inducted and with the commissioning of this craft, the youngest combatant of the Navy, we have got the necessary punch," the Vice Admiral said.
IAI General Manager Nathan Galili, who was present on the occasion, said the company hurriedly built the craft to hand over to the Indian Navy at the earliest.
The Navy, which inducted two fast attack crafts in 1998, is indigenously building two more at the Goa shipyard.
More reports from Maharashtra
Read about: Telgi case | Mumbai blasts