`Scorpene delivery delay may affect force levels`
New Delhi: The delay in delivery of
Scorpene submarines is likely to have an impact on the
envisaged under-water force levels of the Indian Navy,
Government told the Lok Sabha today.
The gaps in the submarine capacity were being
addressed by modernising and upgrading the weapon and sensor
systems on the existing fleet, Defence Minister A K Antony
said in a written reply.
These steps have significantly increased the combat
worthiness, he said.
In 2004, India had signed a contract with France for
supply of six Scorpene submarines, which were to be built in
Mumbai`s Mazagon Dockyards.
The delivery of submarines has been adversely affected
due to initial teething problems, absorption of technology,
augmentation of MDL infrastructure and delay in procurement of
material by MDL.
Due to the delays, the Navy is relying on its fleet of
Russian-origin Kilo class submarines, which are being upgraded
for capability enhancement and life extension.
Answering another query on the Coast Guard, he said
the force has 24 aircraft and 21 helicopters located at
various points across the country.
The Coast Guard fleet includes the Dornier
surveillance aircraft and the advanced light helicopters.
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