Kolkata. The journey that started in 1961 with the delivery of INS Ajay is now moving towards a splendid celebration of adding yet another milestone on Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers Limited’s (GRSE’s) cap with the commissioning of Fast Petrol Vessels (FPVs) ‘ICGS Amrit Kaur’ and ‘ICGS Annie Besant’.
The two FPVs were built by the Kolkata-based Mini Ratna Category 1 and leading shipyard of the country. GRSE has been recently recognised as one of the “Next Fortune 500 Companies of India” at an Event Celebrating “India’s Largest Midsize Companies and Value Creators”.
The second and third of the five Fast Patrol Vessels (FPVs) were commissioned at Kolkata Port Trust by Dr Ajay Kumar, IAS, Defence Secretary, Government of India. The ceremony was attended by Rear Admiral VK Saxena, IN (Retd), Chairman & Managing Director, GRSE; Cmde Sanjeev Nayyar, IN (Retd), Director (Shipbuilding), and other senior officials of the Indian Coast Guard and GRSE.
The FPVs are a medium-range surface vessel with a length of 50 m, a width of 7.5 m and displacement of around 308 T and are capable of operations in the maritime zones of India. These powerful, fuel-efficient platforms are designed to perform multipurpose operations like patrolling, anti-smuggling, anti-poaching, and rescue operations.
The vessels are designed for a maximum speed of 34 knots with an endurance of more than 1,500 nautical miles. It is equipped with three main engines of MTU make and built up at GRSE with advanced control systems, ‘Water Jet’ units and an ‘Integrated Bridge System’ integrating all communication and navigation systems. The ship is also fitted with 40/60 gun as the main armament and will also have improved habitability features with fully air-conditioned modular accommodation for 35 personnel.
The entire design of these FPVs has been developed in-house by GRSE as per requirements specified by the Indian Coast Guard. The FPV designs which are exclusive to GRSE are an improvisation on the Inshore Patrol Vessels (IPVs) built by the Shipyard for the Indian Coast Guard, a few years ago.
Over the years, GRSE has established capabilities for in-house design and shipbuilding and has made significant contributions to the indigenous warship construction programme in India. The design R&D unit of GRSE has been recognised by Department of Scientific & Industrial Research (DSIR), Ministry of Science & Technology, and Government of India.
Over the last 59 years, GRSE has built 784 platforms which include 103 warships to the Indian Navy, Indian Coast Guard & Government of Mauritius which is the highest number of warships built & delivered by any shipyard in the country. From building five-tonne boats to 24,600 tonne Fleet Tanker, GRSE has done it all and has proved its mettle as a pioneer warship builder of the nation.
The Miniratna currently has a strong order book position of around Rs 27, 000 crore under which there are a total of 19 warships at various stages of construction. Presently, the company has six projects that are underway viz., five projects of the Indian Navy and one of the Indian Coast Guard.
GRSE continues to raise its bar higher in the sphere of maritime engineering excellence. Continuous research and innovation, excellent product quality, lean thinking and a strong corporate structure powered by an outstanding human capital, promises a great future for GRSE.