Mumbai: Stealth-guided missile destroyer Mormugao, the second of the four 'Visakhapatnam' class destroyers, was commissioned into the Indian Navy on Sunday.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony in Mumbai, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said INS Mormugao is evidence of India's excellence in warship design and development.
“The aim is to make India the indigenous shipbuilding hub, the minister said. Singh described INS Mormugao as one of the most powerful indigenously-built warships which will significantly enhance the country's maritime capabilities and secure national interests,” he said.
INS Mormugao is one of the world's most technologically-advanced missile carriers. With over 75 per cent indigenous content, it is a testimony to India's excellence in the design and development of warships and a shining example of our growing indigenous defence production capabilities. The warship will meet the present and future needs of our country as well as of our friendly countries across the globe, said Singh.
The minister commended the Navy and MDL for the commissioning of INS Mormugao, describing it as the result of the hard work, dedication and aspirations of the engineers, technicians, designers and scientists. It is a matter of great pride for India, he added.
Safeguarding India's interests in the Indian Ocean Region is the Navy's prime responsibility, Singh said.
“Our growing economy is directly connected to the increasing trade, most of which is through sea routes. Our interest is directly linked to the Indian Ocean. Being an important country in this region, the role of the Indian Navy becomes more important in its security. It is heartening to see that they are discharging their duties successfully,” he said.
Singh termed the armed forces as the backbone of India's unprecedented growth. “India is touching newer heights of success every day. We are now among the top five economies of the world. According to a report by investment firm Morgan Stanley, we will be among the top three economies in the next five years,” said Singh.
He reiterated the government's resolve to prepare the nation to deal with any situation arising due to the rapidly changing global scenario, adding it is the government's top priority to continue strengthening the security infrastructure by providing the military with state-of-the-art indigenous weapons and equipment.
In this era of globalisation, almost all nations are dependent on each other in the field of trade. Hence, rule-based freedom of navigation, security of sea lanes etc. have become more important than ever for the stability and economic progress of the world, he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral R Hari Kumar said the commissioning of INS Mormugao is indicative of the large strides India has taken in warship design and building capability over the last decade.
He said the warship is a true illustration of the 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat' and 'Make in India' initiatives and reinforces the Navy's commitment to supporting India's transformation into a global ship-building hub. The warship, with her multi-dimensional combat capability, will form part of the Western Fleet, the sword arm of the Indian Navy, he said.
Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, Chief of Defence Staff General Anil Chauhan and Goa governor P S Sreedharan Pillai were present at the ceremony.
INS Mormugao is the second of the four 'Visakhapatnam' class destroyers of 'Project 15B', indigenously designed by the Indian Navy's in-house organisation, Warship Design Bureau and constructed by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited, Mumbai. Named after the historic port city of Goa, Mormugao coincidentally undertook its first sea trial on December 19, 2021, when Goa celebrated 60 years of liberation from Portuguese rule.
INS Mormugao is 163 metres long and 17 metres wide. It has a displacement of 7,400 tonnes and a maximum speed of 30 knots (55 kmph).
The warship is packed with sophisticated state-of-the-art weapons and sensors such as surface-to-surface missiles and surface-to-air missiles. It is fitted with a modern surveillance radar which provides target data to the gunnery weapon systems on board.