Hyderabad: The Eastern Naval Command at Visakhapatnam is gearing up for a unique milestone in India`s defence history on July 26 wherein Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will launch the indigenously-built nuclear-powered submarine that is tentatively named INS Arihant.
July 26 is celebrated as `Vijay Diwas` which marks
India`s triumph over Pakistani intruders in Kargil. Launch of
the indigenously-built nuclear-powered submarine has been
planned for July 26 to coincide with Vijay Diwas. A host of
Navy and defence officials are expected to grace the occasion.
Though the Navy authorities haven`t yet officially
confirmed the programme, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S
Rajasekhara Reddy announced the Prime Minister`s visit to
Visakhapatnam after a meeting with the latter in New Delhi
late last week. A senior Navy official told PTI over phone
from Visakhapatnam that everything related to the event was
being taken care of by Navy higher officials in New Delhi.
"Right now we have no information about the event as
such," the Navy official added. Said to be built under the
Advanced Technology Vessels (ATV) Programme at a cost of 2.9
billion USD at the Naval Dockyard in Visakha patnam, the
6,000-tonne submarine will be put on sea trials for two years
before being commissioned into full service. In the two years,
the submarine will also undergo harbour trials of its nuclear
reactor and other systems.
India previously used a leased Russian-built nuclear
submarine INS Chakra under then Capt R N Ganesh from January
1988 to January 1991.
With the launch of the indigenously-built nuclear-powered
submarine, India will join the exclusive club of US, Russia,
China, France and the UK with similar capabilities. The ATV
will give India the additional power of a nuclear weapon
strike from the sea, apart from surface and air which it
The ATV has been developed jointly by the Indian Navy and
the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The
nuclear reactor of the submarine has reportedly been developed
at the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research, Kalpakkam,
while the vessel is based on the Russian Akula-I class