Indian Coast Guard Ship ‘Vajra’, the sixth in the series of seven Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) constructed by M/s Larsen & Toubro Ltd., was commissioned at Chennai by General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Defence Staff on Wednesday in the presence of DG Krishnaswamy Natarajan, Director General Indian Coast Guard, Inspector General S Paramesh, Commander, Coast Guard Region (East), Mr. JD Patil, Whole time Director, M/s L&T and other senior dignitaries of the Central and State Government.
ICGS Vajra, the 98-metre OPV, has been designed and built by M/s Larsen & Toubro Ltd at Kattupalli, Chennai and is fitted with State-of-the-Art Navigation and Communication Equipment, Sensors and Machinery. The Ship will be equipped with 30mm and 12.7mm Guns with Fire Control System for enhancing its fighting efficiency. The Ship draws approximately 2100 tons (GRT) and is propelled by Twin MTU 8000 series engines of 9100 KW each, capable of achieving 26 knots of top speed and endurance of 5000 nm at economical speed. The ship is designed to carry one twin engine helicopter (ALH MK-III under acceptance by ICG from M/s HAL) and four high speed boats including two Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats for swift Boarding Operations, Search and Rescue, Law Enforcement and Maritime Patrol. The Ship is also capable of carrying Pollution Response Equipment for oil spill response at Sea. The sustenance and reach, coupled with the latest modern equipment & systems, provides her the capability to perform the role of a Command Platform to accomplish the Coast Guard Charter of Duties.
‘Vajra’ meaning ‘Thunderbolt’ is a projection of Indian Coast Guard’s will and commitment ‘To Serve and Protect’ the maritime interests of our nation. ICGS Vajra is commanded by Deputy Inspector General Alex Thomas and will be based at Tuticorin under the Operational and Administrative Control of the Commander, No. 16 Coast Guard District (Tuticorin). The Ship on joining the Coast Guard Eastern fleet, will be deployed extensively for EEZ surveillance and other duties as enshrined in the Coast Guard Charter, to safeguard the Maritime Interests of India. The Indian Coast Guard with this ship joining the fleet, will have 157 Surface assets and 62 Aircraft in its inventory.