Mumbai: Union Defense Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday launched the warship Nilgiri, which is the first ship of Project 17A here.
“India is a large country and has vast maritime potential. We have around 7500 kilometers of the coastal area. A small disruption can damage our large interest that’s the reason why we are giving so much importance to the Indian Navy,” Singh said at the launch event of Nilgiri here.
He also added that the launch of the stealth frigate was a significant step towards achieving majority defense production in the country.
“India is now among the few countries where ships and submarines are made indigenously. Our target is to make India a country of USD 5 trillion economy. Our target for 2027 is that 70 percent of defence production should be indigenous,” Singh said.
The stealth frigate, Nilgiri, is made with the co-ordination of Mazagon Dockyard Limited and Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers with the Indian Navy, DRDO, and other public and private partners.
The launch of the first ship of Project 17A marks another significant milestone in the annals of the indigenous warship design and construction program of India.
With a launch weight of 2650 tonnes, the vessel made its first contact with water at 11:20 am with full fanfare during the launching ceremony.
Hailing the persons involved with the construction of the warship, the Defense Minister said, “Today is a day of pride and contentment for all those who have been involved in the design and construction of this state-of-the-art warship. The Nilgiri will one day ride the ocean waves and rule the seas confidently. That is my wish and vision for this mighty ship.”
“I am fully confident that Nilgiri & the other 6 ships of the Project will proudly fly the Indian Flag across the oceans, proving to be a worthy ambassador of the country showcasing our shipbuilding prowess and would spread India’s message of peace and strength across the globe,” Singh added.
Project 17A frigate is a design derivative of the Shivalik class stealth frigates with much-advanced stealth features and indigenous weapons and sensors.