GRSE Launches In-house Designed First of Class Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft ‘Arnala’

Indian Navy

Kolkata / Chennai: The Indian Navy’s first Anti-Submarine Warfare Shallow Water Craft (ASW SWC) – Arnala, being built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) Ltd, was launched by Rasika Chaube, Financial Advisor (Defence Services), Ministry of Defence, on December 20, 2022 at Larsen & Toubro, Kattupalli, Chennai.

Arnala’, the ASW SWC made her first contact with water of Bay of Bengal at 1040 hrs at the Launch Ceremony. The ship has been named Arnala to signify the strategic maritime importance accorded to the island of Arnala (located about 13 Km north of Vasai, Maharashtra) by the great Maratha warrior, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.

Cmde PR Hari IN (Retd), Chairman and Managing Director, GRSE, Cmde Ashok Khetan, Head (L&T Shipbuilding), RAdm Sandeep Mehta, ACWP&A, Indian Navy, RK Dash, Director (Finance), GRSE, other Senior officials of Indian Armed Forces, GRSE and L&T also witnessed the ceremony.

GRSE is building eight ASW SWCs for the Indian Navy, and these ‘Silent Hunters’ when delivered, shall be a potent force multiplier enhancing the Indian Navy’s capability to detect enemy submarines in our coastal waters.

These 77.6-metre long and 10.5-metre wide vessels propelled by three diesel driven water jets will pack a punch as they will be capable of full-scale sub-surface surveillance of coastal waters as well as Search and Attack. These vessels are classed by IR CLASS.The ASW SWC ships have a displacement of 900 tons with a maximum speed of 25 knots and endurance of 1800 NM.

GRSE has once again created a record by launching six vessels in eight months (May 22 – till date), including the prestigious second P17A, two in-house designed Survey Vessels (Large), a Fast Patrol Vessel, an Ocean Going Passenger cum Cargo Ferry for Guyana & this first ASW Shallow Water Craft today.

In true Naval tradition, the Ship was named ‘Arnala’ after her predecessor who was decommissioned way back in 1999. The ‘Arnala’ class ships were the erstwhile Soviet origin ‘Pettya’ class ships of the Indian Navy ASW Corvettes. Arnala class of ships will replace the Abhay class ASW Ships of Indian Navy and are designed to undertake anti-submarine operations in coastal waters and Low Intensity Maritime Operations (LIMO) including subsurface surveillance in littoral waters.

Rasika Chaube lauded GRSE’s efforts towards achieving 90% indigenisation in shipbuilding and contributing to Government of India’s mission of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. She acknowledged GRSE’s contribution in enhancing the ‘Anti-Submarine Warfare’ capability of Indian Navy by building such capable ships indigenously and especially the ASW- Shallow Water Crafts which have a unique distinction of being a first of the type being built in India. She stressed on the need for the armed forces to be well equipped with the best and the latest technology and said that launching of Anti-Submarine Warfare vessel today is a step in this direction. She also congratulated GRSE on receiving Defence Minister’s Award for this most silent ship being made for the Indian Navy.

Cmde PR Hari CMD GRSE, in his address said, “Today is a very unique occasion where the Chief Guest Smt Rasika Chaube is also the lady who shall do the honours of naming the ship and launching the ship.”

Cmde Hari also stated that being the ‘1st of Class’ to be launched today, in a series of eight ASWSWC ships, ‘Arnala’ is an example of ‘Make in India’ initiatives and when delivered, she will have nearly 88% indigenous content. These ships are testimony to the indigenous design capability of India, he said.

Cmde Hari also congratulated all the stakeholders involved in this project including the Naval Headquarters and Production Partners for their continued support and timely decisions.

Despite challenges due to COVID-19 pandemic, GRSE has made substantial progress on the ships of this project. Launch of this ship reinforces India’s resolve towards complete indigenous shipbuilding.