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PM likely to induct warship INS Kolkata in Mumbai soon


NEW DELHI (PTI): After dedicating aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to induct India's largest indigenously-built warship INS Kolkata in Mumbai in the next few weeks.

The Prime Minister has already been invited to induct the warship, which is constructed by the Mazagon Dockyards Limited and has been designed by the Navy's design bureau, defence officials said.

The 6,800 tonne destroyer, which is over three years behind schedule, is a technology demonstrator and will showcase a giant leap in shipbuilding technology for India, the officials said.

INS Kolkata will be a part of the Kolkata Class destroyers of the Indian Navy which will include follow-on ships by the name of INS Kochin and INS Chennai respectively.

The keel of the warship was laid down in September 2003 and the ship was launched in 2006.

Its original commissioning was planned in 2010 but due to several project delays, it will now happen in 2014.

The ship had also suffered a mishap during trial phase when a Navy officer lost his life following an accident in the fire-fighting equipment of the vessel.

As part of its pre-commissioning weapons trial at sea, INS Kolkata has also test-fired the BRAHMOS supersonic cruise missile off the Karwar coast in Karnataka earlier this month.

India is also building an over 40,000 tonne Indigenous Aircraft Carrier christened INS Vikrant but it will take another three-four years before it gets inducted into the Navy.

The INS Vikramaditya, procured from Russia at the cost of over Rs 15,000 crore, is so far the biggest vessel in the maritime force and is expected to hold this position for at least another decade.

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