India joins elite group of eight with anti-submarine Varunastra in arsenal

The electric torpedo was formally handed over to the Navy in a move termed as a “game-changer”.

Published: 30th June 2016 06:03 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th June 2016 06:03 AM   |  A+A-

manoh

NEW DELHI: India on Wednesday joined a select group of eight countries having the capability to design and develop heavyweight torpedoes, with the induction of Varunastra – an indigenously built anti-submarine torpedo – in the Navy.

Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation’s Naval Science and Technological Laboratory, the electric torpedo was formally handed over to the Navy in a move termed as a “game-changer” by the Naval chief. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said the programme is not only a boost to the country’s indigenous capability but also an opportunity for export.

Varunastra, weighing about 1.25 tonnes, can carry around 250 kg of explosives at a speed of 40 nautical miles an hour. It has almost 95 per cent indigenous content. The torpedo that would cost `10-12 crore per unit is capable of targeting quiet and stealthy submarines, both in deep and littoral water in intense counter-measure environments. The torpedo can be launched from Kolkata, Delhi, Teg, Talwar and Kamorta classes of ships.

Varunastra came up for discussion during Parrikar’s recent visit to Vietnam regarding its export to the Southeast Asian nation. “Successful induction of Varunastra into our Navy will be a game-changer in favour of the warships in sub-surface warfare. This landmark has put the Navy in the elite club of global navies that can boast of self-reliance in underwater sensors and underwater weapons,” said Navy chief Admiral Sunil Lanba.

On the delay in the project, DRDO chief S Christopher said the normal gestation period for development of such a technology was 10 years and it took an extra year as there were many issues since it was being undertaken for the first time. From availability of ships and submarines for testing to numerous aspects of technology, he listed several reasons that delayed the project.

Parrikar urged the DRDO not to have a hands-off approach now that they have developed the torpedo, and handed over the technology to Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) for production.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

facebook twitter whatsapp