New Delhi: The government on Thursday transferred state-owned Hindustan Shipyard Ltd (HSL) from the shipping to the defence ministry to meet the country’s security needs.
Sources said that the move is aimed at creating capabilities for the navy to indigenously construct nuclear submarines.
The Cabinet also approved the setting up of a new shipyard of international standard.
“The government has approved transfer of HSL, Visakhapatnam, to ministry of defence for meeting the national security requirements of building strategic vessels for Indian Navy,” information and broadcasting minister Ambika Soni said.
Briefing the media about the decisions, she said “For meeting the merchant shipping requirements of ship-building and ship repair, government has given ‘in principle´ approval to ministry of shipping for setting up of a new shipyard of international standard.”
The location of the new shipyard is yet to be finalized.
The shipping ministry had sent a note to the Cabinet for the transfer of HSL after valuing the company at a little over Rs1,000 crore and finalising the transfer modalities.
HSL has built around 150 ships and repaired over 1,800 so far and undertaken repair works for the Navy. Sources said it will be critical to the navy’s plan to induct a fleet of nuclear submarines in the coming years.
“The shipyard has work orders worth Rs2,000 crore now, which are likely to be completed by March 2011,” a top HSL official said.