On April 29, 2010, Indian Defense Minister, A K Antony commissioned “INS Shivalik” the first stealth warship designed and built entirely in India. The ship was built by the Mazagon Docks Limited (MDL) and cost Rs. 2,300 crore. 60% of the components have been built in India. In the next ten years, Indian Navy would have ten more such ships. These ships will serve the Indian Navy for the first half of the 21st century.
The INS Shivalik, built at Mumbai’s Mazgaon Docks Ltd as a part of Project 17, is a 143-metre-long warship measuring 17 meters in breadth and a 6000 tonnes displacement. The war ship’s design has been provided by the Navy’s Directorate of Naval Design and comes with radar cross section reduction features that can beat the enemy irrespective of the hull, infra-red or sound signatures. The Combat Management System has been developed jointly by the Bharat Electronics and Indian Navy and has capabilities to turn controls the sensors and weapons of the ship.
Features about the Stealth war ship have been released by the Navy and they include unique add-ons hitherto not been seen in India’s arsenal. The INS Shivalik would run on the CODOG propulsion system, while on the arsenal department it would sport Russian Klub surface-to-surface missiles, Russian radar-guided Shtil missile system, Israeli Barak-1 air-defense missile system, Oto Melara and AK-630 guns. Built to counter nuclear, biological and chemical attacks, the war ship would also have in its fold a powerful Atmospheric Control System which would put to good use technology that would shield the vessel and the crew from any impurities, be it radioactive, chemical or biological.
The INS Shivalik would be the Indian Navy’s attempt at upgrading technology into its warfare potential. It has been revealed that there are other frigates in the offing post-shivalik. While INS Sayhadri and INS Satpura are in the works, three stealth frigates – Teg, Tarkash and Trikhand – have also been ordered from Russia.