Tue, 06 Jun 2023

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], May 17 (ANI): Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Tuesday asserted that if any nation aspires to be a regional or global power, then a strong naval force is a necessity.

The Defence Minister said that as India moves toward being a strong, prosperous and secure nation, the Navy is playing an important role in it.

Speaking at the launch of two frontline warships of the Indian Navy - 'Surat' and 'Udaygiri' - at Mazagon Docks Limited (MDL) in Mumbai, Singh said that after the successful launch of INS 'Udaygiri and INS 'Surat', there's no doubt we'll do shipbuilding not only for India but also for the world.

"We will aim for not just Make-In-India but also for Make-for-World," he said.

Singh described the warships as an embodiment of the Centre's unwavering commitment to enhancing the country's maritime capability, with a focus on achieving 'Aatmanirbharta', at a time when the world is witnessing disruption in the global supply chain due to COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

He congratulated the MDL for continued ship production activities despite the pandemic and for meeting the strategic requirements of the Indian Navy in the current geo-political scenario.

The Defence Minister stated that the two warships will add might to the Indian Navy's arsenal and represent to the world India's strategic strength as well as the power of self-reliance.

"INS Udaygiri and INS Surat are the shining examples of India's growing indigenous capability. The warships will be among the most technologically advanced missile carriers in the world that will cater to the present as well as future requirements," he said.

"In the times to come, we will not only fulfil our own needs but will also meet the shipbuilding requirements of the world. We will soon realise Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of 'Make in India, Make for the World'," Singh added.

The Defence Minister also praised the Indian Navy for playing a crucial role in carrying forward the Government's policies such as Act-East, besides strengthening relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) countries.

Recalling his recent visit to the Headquarters of United States Indo-Pacific Command (USINDOPACOM) in Hawaii, he said, they expressed their willingness to work with India, which symbolises the competence of the Indian Armed Forces; especially the commendable work being carried out by the Indian Navy.

"If a country wants to safeguard its national interests, it should project its military prowess in areas far beyond the mainland. If a country has aspirations to become a regional or global power, it is necessary to develop a strong Naval force. The centre is making all efforts in this direction. We want to make a strong, secure and prosperous India, which is recognised as a global power," Singh said.

Asserting that global security, border disputes and maritime dominance have led nations around the world to modernise their military, he exhorted the public and the private sectors to make full use of the capabilities by taking advantage of the Government's policies and contribute towards making India an indigenous shipbuilding hub.

He assured all possible support of the Government in this endeavour.

In keeping with the Naval traditions, President NWWA (Western Region) Smt Charu Singh and spouse of CMD, MDL Smt Jaishree Prasad blessed and named the ships 'Surat' and 'Udaygiri' respectively. Chief of Naval Staff Admiral R Hari Kumar and other senior officers from the Indian Navy and Ministry of Defence were among the dignitaries present on the occasion. (ANI)

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