AUKUS highlights India’s own submarine development efforts and delays

By The Hindu

Australia’s announcement to acquire nuclear-powered submarines under the tripartite arrangement with the U.K. and the U.S. (AUKUS) puts the spotlight on India’s own submarine efforts, ongoing tender for manufacturing six conventional submarines with technology transfer under Project-75I and the indigenous programme to build six nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSN).

“Unlike Australia, given our geography and operational requirements, India needs both conventional and nuclear-powered submarines,” an official noted.

However, both the conventional and nuclear-powered projects were delayed and the first vessel was at least a decade away while the Navy faced an urgent need to modernise its ageing submarine fleet, especially in the backdrop of increasing forays by the Chinese Navy into the Indian Ocean Region, two officials said.

In July, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) issued the Request For proposal (RFP) to the shortlisted Strategic Partners – the Mazagaon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) and Larsen & Toubro (L&T).

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