VASCO: Indian Coast Guard Ship Saksham, the fifth in the series of 105 m Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs), was commissioned at Goa by Ajay Kumar, IAS, Defence Secretary on 16 Mar 2022 in the presence of Director General VS Pathania, PTM, TM, Director General Indian Coast Guard and senior dignitaries of the central and state government.
‘Saksham’, meaning ‘Capable’, is a projection of Indian Coast Guard will and commitment to Yatra, Tantra, Sarvatra’ towards the maritime interest of the nation.
This 105 meters OPV has been designed and built indigenously by Goa Shipyard Limited and is fitted with advanced technology, navigation and communication equipment, sensors and machinery. The Vessel will be fitted with a 30mm 2A42 Medak gun and two 12.7 mm SRCG guns with FCS. The ship is also equipped with an Integrated Bridge System (IBS), Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), Power Management System (PMS) and High Power External firefighting (EFF) system. The ship is designed to carry one twin-engine helicopter and four high-speed boats, including two inflatable boats for boarding operations, Search and Rescue, Law Enforcement and Maritime Patrol. The ship can also carry limited pollution response equipment to contain oil spills at sea.
Further, the ship displaces approximately 2350 tons (GRT) and is propelled by two 9100 KW diesel engines to attain a maximum of 26 knots.
She has an endurance of 6000 nm at an economical speed. The sustenance and reach, coupled with the latest and modern equipment and system, allows her to perform the role of a command platform and undertake tasks to fulfil the Coast Guard charter.
On joining the Coast Guard fleet, this ship will be based at Kochi. She will be deployed extensively for EEZ surveillance and other duties as enshrined in the Coast Guard charter.
Presently, the Indian Coast Guard has an expanding fleet of ships and aircraft. Further, numerous ships are at various stages of construction at different Indian Shipyards and Advance Light Helicopters are under production at M/s HAL, Bengaluru, which will add strength to the surveillance capabilities of ICG to deal with the ever-dynamic maritime challenges.
ICGS Saksham is commanded by Deputy Inspector General P Rajesh and manned by 10 Officers and 95 men.
The commissioning of ICGS Saksham will enhance the Indian Coast Guard Operational capability to discharge the multifarious maritime tasks. The induction of this Vessel will give a fillip to the maritime protection of our vast coastline of the western Seaboard.