YOUTUBE LINK OF THE REPORT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mhvynwbG408
Almost a month after submitting the proposal, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) has cleared the decks for the salvage of the INS Sindhurakshak – Navy’s Kilo-class submarine which sunk in August last year inside the naval dockyard in Mumbai.
Informed sources mentioned that the Naval Head Quarters in New Delhi will ask the Mumbai-based Western Naval Command (WNC) to sign the contract and issue work orders shortly.
While a query concerning this was sent to the Public Relations Office (PRO) of the Indian Navy, no response was received despite repeated attempts.
It is largely being seen as a shot in the arm for the navy which was eagerly awaiting the final outcome. The conclusion of the salvage would also help the navy get a clearer idea into the cause behind the mishap. The Chief of Naval Staff (CNS) Admiral DK Joshi had, in his annual press conference last month, mentioned that three firms had been shortlisted and that work orders would be issued ‘any day’.”As we understand, the work will take upto five months and a foreign firm has been finalised. The proposal for this work mentions the cost as Rs.200 crore,” said an MoD official.
It was not clear if the ambit of work will also include clearing the ammunition which was onboard the submarine at the time of its sinking. INS Sindhurakshak was all set to go on an operational patrol when it was hit by the accident.
There were also concerns raised over whether foreign nationals will be allowed to work inside the naval dockyard and if so, in what manner.
Immediately after the incident, apart from announcing a Board of Inquiry (BoI), the navy had also set up an empowered committee comprising of in-house experts to invite, scrutinise and shortlist proposals for salvaging the ship. That committee wrapped up its work by December and their proposal was forwarded to the MoD.
- On August 14, 2013, inside the naval dockyard in Mumbai hours before she was to head out for an operational deployment, multiple explosions rocked the Kilo-class submarine.
- At the time of the incident, there were three officers and 15 men onboard. None of them survived.
- Despite persistent efforts, naval divers achieved only limited success in retrieving bodies as well as understanding the cause.
- A naval BoI, into the causes behind the incident, remained inconclusive as the board could not access the sunk submarine to inspect and investigate.