India-based shipbuilding company Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) has launched new Project 17A ship, Himgiri, for the Indian Navy.

The Nilgiri-class stealth frigate was launched into the waters of Hoogly River in the Indian state of Kolkata.

The Project 17A programme will deliver a total of seven advanced frigates. It was approved by the Indian Government in February 2015 to enhance the Indian Navy’s combat capability.

Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) will construct four Nilgiri-class frigates while GRSE will build the remaining three. The project is worth approximately Rs500bn ($7bn).

The lead ship of the class, INS Nilgiri, was built by MDL and launched in September last year.

Himgiri is the first of the three Project 17A ships being built by GRSE. The frigates are the largest combat platforms ever built at GRSE.

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Equipped with gas turbine propulsion, the Project 17A ships are fitted with advanced indigenous weapons and sensors, among other features.

The Directorate of Naval Design (Surface Ship Design Group) [DND(SSG)] has designed the frigates.

Construction of the ship involved 80% of the materials and equipment being sourced from domestic vendors.

GRSE is also leveraging outsourcing and integrated construction methodology for modular ship construction.

The project has led to the creation of employment opportunities for more than 2,000 Indian companies and MSMEs in the country.

Delivery of the ship is expected to take place in August 2023.

In May last year, GRSE received a Rs63.11bn ($901.46m) contract to construct eight anti-submarine warfare shallow water crafts (ASWSWCs) for the Indian Navy.