Mumbai: INS Imphal, a Project 15B stealth guided missile destroyer, was commissioned into the Indian Navy in the presence of defence minister Rajnath Singh at an impressive ceremony held at the Naval Dockyard, Mumbai on December 26, 2023.
The event marks the formal induction of the third of four indigenous ‘Visakhapatnam’ class destroyers, being designed by the Indian Navy’s Warship Design Bureau and constructed by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL), Mumbai.
Speaking on the occasion, the defence minister described INS Imphal as a shining example of ‘Aatmanirbharta’ in defence and a reflection of the commitment of Indian Navy, MDL & all other stakeholders towards national security. “INS Imphal is a symbol of India’s growing maritime power and it will strengthen it further. It will bolster our principle of ‘Jalmev Yasya, Balmev Tasya’ (One Who Controls the Sea is All Powerful) in the Indo-Pacific region,” he said.
The ship measures 163m in length, 17m in breadth with a displacement of 7,400 tonnes and is amongst the most potent warships built in India. It is propelled by four powerful Gas Turbines, in a Combined Gas & Gas configuration, and is capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots.
The minister defined INS IMPHAL as a conglomeration of different strengths of the nation. “Brahmos Aerospace installed Brahmos missile on the ship. Torpedo tube launchers are of Larsen & Toubro (L&T). Rapid Gun Mount has been installed by Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), and Medium Range missiles by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL). In addition, many start-ups and MSMEs are involved in its construction. Just like many elements have given a concrete form to INS IMPHAL, people from all walks of life should work together for us to become ‘Viksit Bharat’. Every citizen is a carrier of India’s security and progress. Whenever one works, the betterment of the nation must be kept in mind,” he said.
INS Imphal has enhanced stealth features resulting in a reduced Radar Cross Section, achieved through efficient shaping of hull, full beam superstructure design, plated masts and use of radar transparent material on exposed decks.
It is armed with sophisticated state-of-the-art weapons and sensors, including Surface-to-Surface Missiles, Surface-to-Air Missiles, Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) rocket launchers & Torpedo launchers, ASW helicopters, radars, sonar and Electronic Warfare systems. The ship is equipped to fight under Nuclear, Biological and Chemical warfare conditions.
A unique feature of this ship is the high level of indigenisation of about 75%, highlighting Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi-led Government’s efforts towards ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’. The indigenous equipment/systems include Combat Management System, Rocket Launcher, Torpedo Launcher, Integrated Platform Management System, Automated Power Management System, Foldable Hangar Doors, Helo Traversing system, Close-in Weapon System, and the Bow-mounted SONAR.