The Indian Navy is looking for clearance from the Defence Acquisition Council or DAC headed by Rakshya Mantri Rajnath Singh and including the three chiefs for a Rs 36,000 crore project involving the manufacture of eight Next Gen Corvette. The warships, all of them indigenously designed corvettes of about 1,500-2000 tonnes, will be made in India.
The huge project, if cleared by the DAC tomorrow, will be a major boost for the Navy as it would mean the clearance for eight badly-needed major warships. It will be a big moment for the Atmanirbharata or self-reliance campaign by the Indian defence ministry as over a thousand medium and small-scale industries or MSMEs are involved.
The project is expected to improve employment capabilities as well: for every worker directly involved in the construction, there are 6.4 additional workers who will be providing their input and skills. These corvettes will be manufactured by Indian shipyards. Which one gets this major project will be decided after the bidding process, with major shipyards including those in Mumbai, Cochin and Kolkata in contention.
The arrival of the corvettes, in 5-7 years, will be a major boost for the Navy. Smaller than a frigate, the corvette has major capabilities, particularly in the missile era of today when the “punch” does not come from big guns on large platforms, but smaller power-packed warships. Also on the agenda are three planes to be utilised for signals and communications. These planes for the Indian Air Force will also be made here and the deal is worth about Rs 5,000 crore.