INS Sindhuratna sails for 97 days
to India after major refit in Russia
The Navy’s Kilo-class submarine INS Sindhuratna which underwent a major upgrade in Russia reached Mumbai after sailing for 97 days and almost 10,000 miles with two port calls — Le Havre, France and Cadiz, Spain — in between.
The submarine underwent a Medium Refit Life Certification (MRLC) process in Russia which extended its life. However, it faced transportation issues against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine.
The initial plan was to move it by a transport dock ship directly from Russia which did not materialise, following which the Navy tried to sea transport the submarine to Norway and then via a transport dock to India, which also did not materialise.
Following this, the Navy decided to sail it directly on its own.
“INS Sindhuratna, a Sindhughosh class submarine, returned to Mumbai after undergoing a major refit at the naval dockyard in Russia. The submarine undertook a gruelling 97-day return passage through the Norwegian Sea, English Channel and the Mediterranean Sea, and arrived in Mumbai on May 16,” the Western Naval Command said on Twitter.
“The submarine with its modernised weapon and sensor suite will enhance the force level in the Western Seaboard, opening a new & exciting chapter in submarine operations in Indian Ocean Region,” it added.
The crew was received by Vice-Admiral Sanjay Bhalla, Chief of Staff, Western Naval Command.
With delays in induction of submarines, the ageing SSKs - 209s (German HDWs) and EKMs (Russian Kilos) are being put through the MRLC process which will extend their life by 10 to 15 years.