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Indian Navy Witnesses Launch of ‘Agray’ and ‘Akshay’ in ASW Shallow Water Craft Project

Kolkata: In a significant development for the Indian Navy, the 5th and 6th ships of the 08 x ASW Shallow Water Craft (SWC) Project, known as ‘Agray’ and ‘Akshay,’ were successfully launched on March 13, 2024, at Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers (GRSE) in Kolkata. The Launch Ceremony was presided over by Air Chief Marshal V R Chaudhari, Chief of the Air Staff. Following maritime traditions, Mrs. Neeta Chaudhari, President AFFWA, officially launched the ships with the ceremonial invocation from Atharva Veda.

The ships, rechristened as Agray and Akshay, pay homage to the erstwhile Abhay Class Corvettes Agray and Akshay of the Indian Navy. This launch event marks a significant milestone in the ongoing 08 x ASW SWC Project, which aims to enhance the Indian Navy’s anti-submarine warfare capabilities in coastal waters, Low Intensity Maritime Operations (LIMO), and Mine Laying Operations.

The contract for the construction of eight ASW SWC ships was signed between the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and GRSE on April 29, 2019. These Arnala-class ships are designed to replace the existing Abhay-class ASW Corvettes and boast impressive specifications, with a length of 77.6 meters, width of 10.5 meters, a displacement of 900 tons, and an endurance of over 1800 nautical miles.

Over the past year, three indigenously built warships/submarines for the Indian Navy have been delivered, and a total of nine warships have been launched. The launch of ‘Agray’ and ‘Akshay’ underscores India’s commitment to ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ in shipbuilding, with the first ship of the project scheduled for delivery in the first half of 2024. The ASW SWC ships boast over 80% indigenous content, contributing to the nation’s goal of large-scale defence production, job creation, and enhanced capabilities within the country.

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