Goa [India], Sept. 9 : Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday commissioned Indian Coast Guard Ship 'Sarathi', third ship in the series of six Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPV), in presence of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar here.
Director General Indian Coast Guard Rajendra Singh, Chairman and Managing Director of Goa Shipyard Ltd (GSL) Rear Admiral (Retd) Shekhar Mital and other senior dignitaries of the Central and State Government were also present on the occasion.
'Sarathi' meaning 'charioteer' is a projection of the Indian Coast Guard's will and commitment 'To serve and protect' the maritime interest of the nation.
The 105-metre OPV has been designed and built indigenously by GSL and is fitted with most advanced state-of-the-art navigation and communication equipment, sensors and machineries.
Its features include 30 mm CRN 91 Naval Gun, Integrated Bridge System (IBS), Integrated Machinery Control System (IMCS), Power Management System (PMS) and High Power External Fire Fighting System.
The ship is designed to carry one twin engine Light Helicopter and five high-speed boats, including two Quick Reaction Inflatable Boats, for swift boarding operations, search and rescue, law enforcement and maritime patrol.
The ship is also capable of carrying pollution response equipment to contain oil spill at sea. The ship draws 2500 tons (GRT) propelled by two 9100 KW diesel engines to attain a maximum speed of 26 knots and have an endurance of 6500 NM at economical speed.
The sustenance and reach coupled with the latest and modern equipment and systems, provides her the capability to perform the role of a command platform and accomplish all Coast Guard charter of duties.
The ship on joining Coast Guard Fleet will be based at Kochi and will form part of the Naval Training Squadron.
In addition, the ship will be deployed for the EEZ surveillance and other duties to safeguard the maritime interests of India.
Presently, Indian Coast Guard has a fleet of 123 ships or boats, further 68 ships or boats are at various stages of construction at different shipyards.
With the commissioning of this vessel and other assets, the Indian Coast Guard will emerge as a stronger and potent force to address the emerging security challenges in maritime zone of India.
ICGS 'Sarathi' will be commanded by Commandant Atul Joshi and manned by 14 officers and 98 men. The ship will be under the administrative and operational control of the Commander, Coast Guard Region (West).
The commissioning of ICGS 'Sarathi' will enhance the Indian Coast Guard's operational capability to discharge the multifarious maritime tasks.
With the increased threat from sea-borne terrorism, the induction of a sophisticated and state-of-the-art OPV will give a fillip to the maritime security of our vast coastline and in particular the maritime State of Kerala and island territories of Lakshadweep and Minicoy.