JOURNAL OF DEFENCE STUDIES

Is the Submarine Arm Losing its Punch?

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  • January 2014
    Volume: 
    8
    Issue: 
    1
    Perspectives

    The explosions that gutted INS Sindhurakshak during the early hours of 14 August 2013 caught the imagination of an entire nation that watched the brief footage of the catastrophic event on their television sets. Barring some minor accidents which resulted in structural damage, this is the most tragic incident involving loss of lives in the 46 year history of the submarine arm. It not only sent shock waves through the defence establishment but also raised several questions concerning depleting submarine force levels,aspects of safety, and the absence of credible search and rescue (SAR)and salvage capabilities. In addition, there are connected issues related to maintenance, refits and modernization programmes, which have a bearing on their operational availability. An attempt is made in this article to examine these issues and let the reader draw his/her own conclusions.

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