In a major move aimed at giving boost to achieving the goal of self-reliance in defence manufacturing government will acquire five Fleet Support Ships (FSS) which will be used for replenishing ships at sea with fuel, water, ammunition and stores for the Indian Navy at an overall cost of approximately Rs 19,000 crore from Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL), Visakhapatnam.
“Ministry of Defence had signed a contract with Hindustan Shipyard Limited (HSL), Visakhapatnam for acquisition of five Fleet Support Ships (FSS) for the Indian Navy at an overall cost of approx. Rs 19,000 crore. It would be a major boost towards achieving the goal of self-reliance in defence manufacturing as these ships will be indigenously designed and constructed by HSL, Visakhapatnam,” said Ministry of Defence.
The Cabinet Committee on Security had approved the acquisition of these ships during its meeting on August 16, 2023.
These ships will not only be used for replenishing ships at sea with fuel, water, ammunition and stores but also enhance strategic reach and mobility.
“The FSS will be employed for replenishing ships at sea with fuel, water, ammunition and stores, enabling the Indian Naval Fleet to operate for prolonged periods without returning to harbour. These ships would enhance the strategic reach and mobility of the Fleet,” it said further.
In time of disasters The ships can also be deployed for evacuation of people and human assistance and disaster relief (HADR) operations.
These first-of-its kind ships of 44,000 tons to be built in India by an Indian Shipyard will generate employment of nearly 168.8 lakh mandays over a period of eight years.
“With majority of the equipment and systems being sourced from indigenous manufacturers, these vessels will be a proud flag bearer of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ in consonance with the ‘Make in India’ initiatives of the Government,” it added.
The construction of these ships will provide a new dimension to the Indian shipbuilding Industry and encourage active participation of associated industries, including MSMEs.