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India lays foundation for first warships design centre


KOZHIKODE (BNS): India on Tuesday laid the foundation for establishing the country’s first R & D centre for defence shipbuilding – the National Institute for Research and Development in Defence Shipbuilding (NIRDESH) – at Chaliyam near here in Kerala.

Defence Minister A K Antony, who laid the foundation stone for the Rs 600 crore mega institute, said that this will be the fifth defence project in the state.

The other defence projects in Kerala are Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd’s unit at Kasargod, Bharath Earth Movers Ltd’s unit at Palakkad, Bharat Electronics Ltd’s factory at Kochi and a BrahMos Aerospace unit at Thiruvananthapuram.

NIRDESH, which will be an autonomous body under the department of defence production, would be funded by the Defence Ministry and four defence shipyards in the country.

The institute will focus on research and development of various naval vessels for the Indian Navy and Coast Guard.

From the designing of warships, submarines and other naval platforms to system integration and providing technological support in partnership with the shipbuilding industry, NIRDESH will promote and strengthen India’s indigenous shipbuilding capability.

“While we have successfully constructed warships and submarines in India, R&D in various disciplines of warship construction, including detail designing, system integration, and a plethora of other aspects leading to drawing board to delivery of ships on our own need to have a sharper focus,” Secretary of Defence Production, Raj Kumar Singh, who also attended the ceremony, said.

Joint Secretary (Naval Systems) Gyanesh Kumar said the institute would put India among the top five or six countries of the world where state-of-the-art warships and submarines would be designed.

The objective of NIRDESH was to promote R&D relating to warship and submarine design and to provide an impetus to develop composite and complete indigenous capability to meet future demands of ships and submarines by Indian maritime security agencies, he said.

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