The National Democratic Alliance government on Thursday initiated the process for opening a second production line for advanced submarines for the Indian Navy under its signature “Make in India" programme.
According to a statement from the Indian Navy, as part of Project 75-I, leading international submarine manufacturers interested in the ₹45,000-crore project will need to work with an Indian Strategic Partner, which will construct six conventional submarines in India.
“This would provide a major boost to the indigenous design and construction capability of submarines in India, in addition to bringing in the latest submarine design and technologies as part of the project," the statement said.
This is the second time the NDA government has invited private companies to bid for a major defence contract under the Strategic Partnership Model. Previously, the government had cleared the procurement of 111 Naval Utility Helicopters (NUH).
"The Indian companies would be shortlisted based on their capability for integration of system of systems, expertise in shipbuilding domain and their financial strength," the navy statement said. Once Indian companies express interest, the government will proceed to its Request for Pricing (RFP) stage in the procurement process on the basis of which commercial bids will be examined.
The Indian Navy currently operates 14 conventionally powered submarines and is in the process of inducting five more. The Navy also operates two nuclear ballistic missile submarines, both made in India, and a Russian-built nuclear powered fast attack submarine. India's nuclear submarine arm is based in Visakhapatnam while the diesel electric submarines are primarily based both in Mumbai and Visakhapatnam.