Navy chief Adm. Sunil Lanba said that by 2050, India will have 200 ships, 500 aircraft and be a world-class navy. Speaking on the occasion of Navy Day, Lanba said that the government has approved induction of 56 new ships and six submarines to augment Indian navy’s overall prowess while the country’s first indigenous aircraft carrier Vikrant has entered its final phase of construction,
32 ships and submarines are presently under construction in Indian shipyards and in addition to them, government has accorded approval for 56 ships and six submarines. He asserted that the Indian navy continued to remain “on watch 24 X 7” safeguarding the country’s national interests in the maritime domain.
About the long-pending proposal to appoint a chief of defence staff as head of the tri-services, he said there was a consensus among the the army, navy and air force on it and that a proposal on the matter was sent to the defence ministry.
Referring to overall security scenario in the region, Adm. Lanba said, “Our maritime security strategy is aimed at providing a maritime environment that is free from all forms of traditional and non-traditional threats to our national development.” To queries on the state of coastal security 10 years after the 26/11 attack, he said the process for installing automated identification transponders on around 2.5 lakh fishing boats has been started and talked about various other measures.
About the strategic nuclear submarine project, he said the Indian navy has successfully completed the first deterrence patrol of INS Arihant this year, adding, “with this, we have operationalised the third and the most survivable segment of the country’s nuclear triad.”
He said the second indigenous aircraft carrier has received the necessary impetus and it will be a CATOBAR, 65000 ton ship. He added the first of the two Indigenous Aircraft Carriers, presently in its third and final Phase of construction at Kochi, will undergo sea trials in 2020. “Induction of Vikrant will provide significant fillip to the navy’s blue water capability, increasing the reach and impact of carrier borne strike forces, both as a means of deterrence as well as during combat operations,” he said.