The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) has commissioned the second Vikram-class Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), ICGS Vijaya (34), during a ceremony in Chennai on Sept. 14, 2018.
The indigenously built ship was ceremoniously inducted into the ICG fleet by the Indian Defence Secretary Sanjay Mitra in the presence of Indian Coast Guard Director General Rajendra Singh & other dignitaries.
The new OPV will be based at Paradip Port in Odisha for maritime protection of coastline of India’s eastern seaboard and its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
ICGS Vijaya was delivered to the Coast Guard on Aug. 30 by Indian shipbuilder, Larsen & Toubro (L&T). The 2,160-ton vessel was launched on Jan. 20 this year and is second in the series of seven OPVs being designed and constructed by L&T for the Coast Guard.
L&T is the first private Indian shipyard to construct and deliver OPVs for the Indian Coast Guard. The company received the order valued at Rs 1432 crore (~USD200 million) for design and construction of OPVs from the Indian Ministry of Defence in March 2015. The first vessel of the series ICGS Vikram (33) was handed over to the ICG on April 11 this year, as a curtain raiser for DEFEXPO-2018 exhibition.
The delivery and commissioning of ICGS Vijaya comes close on the heels of the launch of OPV-3 on August 28 at the L&T Kattupalli shipyard. The work is simultaneously in progress on the OPVs 4, 5 & 6, that are at different stages of completion.
Vikram class OPVs are long-range surface ships, equipped to handle helicopter operations and capable of operating in Indian maritime zones including island territories. The role of the OPV is to conduct coastal and offshore patrolling, policing maritime zones, control & surveillance, anti-smuggling & anti-piracy operations with limited wartime roles.
The vessels are approximately 97m long, 15m wide and has 3.6m draught, 2,140 tonne displacement and a range of 5,000 NM. They can attain a sustained speed of up to 26 knots and are armed with a 30mm CRN 91 Naval Gun and two 12.7mm heavy machine guns (HMG) with fire control system (FCS).
The OPVs are built with Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS) to enable special control capabilities generally integrated in larger warships like frigates and destroyers. The vessels are fitted with front propulsion pods for providing an ability of high manoeuvrability. The entire design and construction process has been certified by American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) as well as Indian Registrar of Shipping (IRS) and were overseen by the Indian Coast Guard’s resident team at Kattupalli.