Two Diving Support Vessels (DSVs), which will boost submarine support operations and are being built by the Hindustan Shipyard Ltd for the Indian Navy, are scheduled to be launched Thursday at Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh.
Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral R Hari Kumar, will be the chief guest at the launching ceremony. The vessels will be launched at the hands of Navy Welfare and Wellness Association (NWWA) president Kala Hari Kumar, who would also be performing the traditional honour and naming them, said officials Wednesday.
There are four key ceremonial occasions – keel laying, launching, commissioning, and decommissioning – in any ship’s life. A ship is said to be launched when it is transferred from the building site into the waters.
Officials said these DSVs are first of their kind ships indigenously designed and built at the HSL for the Indian Navy. The vessels are 118.4 metre long, 22.8 metre at the broadest point and will have a displacement of 9,350 tonne.
The contract between the Indian Navy and HSL in this regard was signed earlier in September 2018.
Officials said in addition to operating submarines to secure the waters, the Indian Navy undertakes diving operations in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) to facilitate various activities such as submarine rescue, underwater inspection, testing or salvage and recovery of objects, ships or aircraft lost at sea. As these activities involve diving operations with divers remaining underwater for prolonged durations, these tasks require suitable platforms for the launch and recovery along with the carriage of related tools and equipment.
The DSVs are also equipped with a Deep Submergence Rescue Vessel (DSRV), which significantly enhances their submarine rescue capabilities.
The Indian Navy has said these ships will be capable of sustained patrolling, conducting search and rescue operations and carrying out helicopter operations on high seas.
“With approximately 80 per cent indigenous content, the DSV project has generated considerable local employment opportunities and has also promoted indigenisation which in turn will aid in boosting India’s economy,” the Navy said.
Officials said while a submarine is a significant strategic asset, it is also vulnerable to action damage, requiring extensive diving for undertaking search and rescue operations that demand the availability of a credible and suitably equipped platform. The induction of DSVs equipped with DSRV would be key to enhancing the Indian Navy’s capability and reach of submarine rescue operations in the IOR.