Visakhapatnam: Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today commissioned the indigenously-built anti-submarine warfare stealth corvette INS Kiltan here, describing it as a “shining armour” in the country’s ‘Make in India’ programme.
Kiltan is the latest indigenous warship after Shivalik class, Kolkata class and sister ships INS Kamorta and INS Kadmatt to have joined the Indian Navy’s arsenal wherein a plethora of weapons and sensors have been integrated to provide a Common Operational Picture (COP), an official release said.
It is India’s first major warship to have a superstructure of carbon fibre composite material resulting in improved stealth features, lower top weight and maintenance costs, it said.
Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Eastern Naval Command H S Bisht and other senior officers attended the commissioning of INS Kiltan at the Naval Dockyard at the Eastern Naval Command here.
On the occasion, Sitharaman said the Centre was committed to achieving self-reliance in the defence sector on the concept of ‘Make in India’ and was taking all measures in this regard.
“INS Kiltan strengthens our defence system and will be a shining armour in our ‘Make in India’ programme as it is totally built here,” the defence minister said.
“The Union government is committed to achieving self- reliance in the defence sector and prepared to provide any amount of funds in this direction,” she said.
The stealth corvette has been designed by the Indian Navy’s in-house body, the Directorate of Naval Design under Project 28 (Kamorta Class).
INS Kiltan is also the first major warship to have undertaken sea trials of all major weapons and sensors as a pilot project and is ready to be operationally deployed on the day of joining the Indian Navy.
In the future, it would also be installed with short range SAM system and carry an integral ASW helicopter.
Sitharaman said INS Kiltan marks another milestone in the Indian Navy’s plans for modernisation and enhancement of capability.
The Indian Navy has been playing a pivotal role in safeguarding and promoting the country’s maritime security and interest and also actively participating in rescue and relief operations during natural calamities, she noted.
Admiral Lanba said keeping with the Indian Navy’s commitment to ‘Make in India’, INS Kiltan joins the long list of warships being built indigenously.
“INS Kiltan is the third of the Kamorta class and demonstrates our desire to innovate and improve,” he said.
The ship will considerably augment the fleet’s war-fighting potential in general and anti-submarine warfare capabilities in particular, he said.
“The notable progress achieved in terms of indigenous development of sensors is visible in the outfit of this class of ships,” he said.
According to a Navy statement released earlier, this is the third of the four Kamorta-class corvettes being built under Project 28.
The ship hosts a predominantly indigenous cutting-edge weapons and sensors suite which includes heavyweight torpedoes, ASW rockets, 76 mm calibre Medium Range gun and two multi-barrel 30 mm guns as close-in-weapon system (CIWS) with dedicated fire control systems, missile decoy rockets (Chaff), advanced Electronic Support Measure system, most advanced bow mounted sonar and air surveillance radar Revathi, it said.
The ship derives its name from one of the islands in Aminidivi group of the strategically located Lakshadweep and Minicoy group of islands.
The ship also boasts of the proud legacy of the erstwhile Petya Class ship of same name ‘Kiltan (P79)’ built in the USSR, which had actively participated as Task Force Commander in ‘Operation Trident’ during the 1971 Indo-Pak war.
Designed by the Indian Navy’s in-house organisation Directorate of Naval Design and built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE) in Kolkata, INS Kiltan portrays the growing capability of the Indian Navy, it said.
GRSE’s Chairman and Managing Director Rear Admiral V K Saxena today said INS Kiltan showcases the technological capabilities of the shipyard to construct modern warships.
With 81 per cent of the indigenous content and composite super structure, the ship (INS Kiltan) bears testimony to the professionalism, hard work and indigenous shipbuilding prowess of GRSE, he added.