In a significant development, India’s fifth Scorpene submarine Vagir commenced its first sea sortie from Mumbai on February 1.
It was expected to go for maiden surface sortie in December last year.
The name ‘Vagir’ has been derived from a Sand Fish, a predatory marine species.
The fifth submarine of Project 75, which began in November 2020 at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited, will be commissioned into the Indian Navy later this year.
The MDL delivered two Scorpene submarines in 2021 amidst the Covid pandemic and ‘the commencement of sea trials of the fifth submarine is a significant milestone’, the Indian Navy said.
During her sea sortie, the submarine will undergo intense trials of all its systems at sea, including propulsion systems, weapons and sensors.
Last year, Project-75’s INS Karanj and INS Vela were inducted into the Indian Navy in Mumbai.
The first scorpene-class submarine INS Kalavari was commissioned in 2017 while the INS Khanderi in September 2019.
All these submarines have advanced stealth and combat capabilities.
The delivery of diesel-electric attack submarine reaffirmed India’s membership in the exclusive group of submarine building nations.
The sixth submarine, INS Vagsheer is under development stage.
Scorpene-class submarines are a key asset for the Navy as they can undertake anti-surface as well as anti-submarine warfare missions.
These submarines are capable of launching different kinds of torpedoes and missile systems.
They are also equipped with a range of surveillance and intelligence gathering mechanisms.