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CCS discusses Navy's new acquisition plans

September 22, 2009 21:05 IST

The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) today discussed acquisition of 10 warships and 80 radars for the Navy aimed at strengthening coastal security, identified as a priority after the Mumbai attacks.

The 10 warships -- six frigates with advanced stealth features and four corvettes -- would be built indigenously beginning 2010 and would be delivered before 2017, Defence Ministry sources said.

These warships would be built at an average cost of Rs 2,800 crore each, they added.

The Navy was originally interested in buying five of these 10 ships from abroad, as Indian shipyards' order books were currently full and the foreign shipyards would be able to deliver them within a short duration, they said.

However, Defence Minister A K Antony had pressed for ordering the warships with Indian shipyards to boost indigenisation and the domestic defence industry.

The Navy already has 34 warships and six submarines on order at Indian shipyards. It currently has about 140 warships in its fleet.

The coastal radars are being procured to enhance surveillance in coastal areas.

After 26/11, the government has accorded high priority to strengthen coastal surveillance and security apparatus and in this regard, the Navy has been made overall in-charge.

The CCS was chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and attended by Antony and Home Minister P Chidambaram.

Navy chief Admiral Nirmal Verma later met Chidambaram to discuss coastal security issues, sources added.

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