Mumbai: INS Chennai, a Kolkata-class destroyer ship, was commissioned into the Indian Navy’s combat fleet on Monday. Defence minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday commissioned the warship at the naval dockyard in Mumbai.
INS Chennai is the largest-ever warship to be built in India. Built at the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd in Mumbai, the ship’s construction also marks the end of the Project 15A to build Kolkata-class guided missile destroyers.
Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Sunil Lanba, was also present on the occasion. “The ship is equipped with a decoy that can divert a missile attack. Nearly 60% of the ship was built at Mazagon Dock, while weapons and sensors were brought from Israel and Russia. Destroyers are second only to aircraft carriers in projecting raw combat power,” said an official.
“The ship is designed to carry and operate up to two multi-role combat helicopters,” said Vice-admiral Girish Luthra (chief of naval command western command).
The Navy plans to become a 200-warship force with around 600 aircraft and helicopters by 2027. INS Chennai will be placed under the operational and administrative control of the Western Naval Command.
The ship will undergo certain additional sea trials of the ship-borne systems before being assigned to the Western Fleet and based in Mumbai.
INS Chennai is 164 metres long with a displacement of over 7,500 tonnes, and sails at a top speed of over 30 knots (around 55 kms) per hour.
Armed with supersonic surface-to-surface BrahMos missiles and Barak-8 Long Rang Surface-to-Air missiles, its undersea warfare capability includes indigenously developed anti-submarine weapons and sensors, prominently the hull-mounted sonar HUMSA-NG, heavyweight torpedo tube launchers, rocket launchers and towed array sonar capability.
For defence against enemy missiles, INS Chennai is fitted with ‘Kavach’ chaff decoy system and for protection from enemy torpedoes, has ‘Mareech’ torpedo decoy system, both developed in India.
A potent platform capable of undertaking a variety of tasks and missions spanning the full spectrum of maritime warfare, she can carry and operated two multi-role helicopters.
INS Chennai is propelled by a powerful combined gas and propulsion plant consisting of four reversible gas turbines.
Her very high level of automation with sophisticated digital networks on board includes ATM-based integrated ship data network, combat management systems, automatic power management system and auxiliary control system.
The ship’s crest depicts the outline of the iconic Fort St George of Chennai in the background, a part of the adjacent beach and a sloop on blue and white waves.
The crew of the ship abides by the Sanskrit motto ‘Shatro Sanharaka’ meaning Vanquisher of Enemies, epitomizing the warrior spirit and strong resolve to prevail and succeed in combat.