INS Tarkash Commissioned into Navy

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  1. Joji

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    The Hindu : Today's Paper / NATIONAL : Russia-built multirole stealth frigate INS Tarkash commissioned into Navy


    Vladimir Radyuhin

    The fifth such vessel, it is armed with the BrahMos supersonic missile

    India took delivery on Friday of the fifth Russia-built multirole stealth frigate. INS Tarkash was commissioned by Vice-Admiral Shekhar Kumar Sinha, Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command, at a ceremony at the Yantar Shipyard, Kaliningrad, Russia, attended by senior Indian and Russian officials.

    Tarkash belongs to the second batch of three modified Krivak-III (Talwar) class frigates India ordered from Russia in 2006 under a $1.6-billion contract. The first frigate of the batch, INS Teg, was delivered in April and the third one, INS Trikand, is undergoing dock trials and is expected to be handed over next summer after completing sea trials in the Baltic Sea.

    Each of the new frigates is armed with eight BrahMos supersonic anti-ship missiles instead of the less potent Club-N missiles installed on the first three frigates, which were delivered to the Indian Navy in 2003-2004.

    Speaking at the induction ceremony, India’s Ambassador to Russia Ajai Malhotra described INS Tarkash as a fine example of the evolution of Indo-Russian defence cooperation from buyer-seller relationship to joint research, development and production of advanced weapon systems.

    “It is very satisfying that whilst the ship is made in Russia, it has on board many Indian systems, including the ship’s sonar and its entire communications set-up,” Mr. Malhotra said. “Of particular note is the BrahMos missile with which it is armed, which is the result of a joint Indo-Russian cooperative effort and is probably the best supersonic missile in the world.”

    Even though the construction of the first and second batches of frigates was dogged by long delays, Russia hopes that India will place more orders for the advanced warship, which proved its mettle during war games and the Indian Navy’s anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden.

    “We hope there’ll be another contract for three frigates because they turned out to be very good and remain state-of-the-art,” said Andrei Dyachkov, president of Russia’s United Shipbuilding Corporation.

    Given India’s emphasis on indigenising defence production, Russian shipbuilders are ready to discuss shifting construction of warships to India.

    “We’ve been discussing this option with our Indian colleagues and are ready to undertake a step-by-step transfer of production to India after training Indian shipbuilders, setting up the necessary infrastructure in India and building the first ship in a series in Russia,” Mr. Dyachkov told The Hindu .
     
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