FRaNce OFFeRS iNDia 2 StOP-gaP ScORPeNe SUbmaRiNeS
As the already delayed Project 75I request for proposal for six new conventional attack submarines continues to hang fire, the Indian Navy is studying a list of emergency measures to possibly shore up force levels in the interim. French shipyard DCNS, partially owned by the French Government, designers and manufacturers of the Scorpne class submarine, have put forth an offer offering two Scorpne submarines off the shelf as a stop-gap supply to mitigate rapidly reducing force levels in the Indian Navy, made worse by the recent tragedy aboard INS Sindhurakshak, one of the Navys 10 kilo class attack submarines. DCNS, with authorisation from the French Government to make the offer to the Indian Government, has assured the Indian Navy that it can build two Scorpenes and deliver them in a time period that coincides with the induction of the first of the original six Scorpnes being built at present Mazagon Docks Ltd (MDL) in Mumbai.
DCNS officials confirm that the Scorpne build programme is now fully on track after major hiccups between 2009 and 2013. A comprehensive review meeting held last month took stock of progress, and involved persons from the French DGA, DCNS and French industry.