Project 75: Project 75i, 6 Submarine Names List | Project 75 UPSC

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Project 75 is an ambitious plan proposed by the Government of India. India has been victim to enough invasions and colonization to know the worth of freedom. However, being a country with such a strategic position and sharing its borders with rather hostile neighbours increases India’s warfare risks. This is why the Indian Government has been elaborately scheming to prepare the Indian Navy with the best and the latest technologies. Project 75 and Project 75i of the Indian Navy aim to manufacture submarines with the latest technologies.

Project 75 is a significant initiative undertaken by the Indian government in collaboration with foreign manufacturers to build advanced submarines for the Indian Navy. Candidates must study and understand the objectives, progress, challenges, and impact of Project 75 on India’s defense preparedness. To effectively study Project 75, candidates can refer to official government reports, defense publications, and news articles. Additionally, analyzing the previous year’s question papers related to defense projects and naval capabilities will provide insights into the pattern and types of questions asked in the UPSC exam.

Project 75

Project 75, initiated by the Indian Navy and the Government of India, aims to construct six Scorpene class attack submarines at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) in Mumbai. These submarines are a collaborative effort between the Spanish company Navantia and the French Naval Group. The project’s primary objective is to bolster India’s maritime defense capabilities by acquiring state-of-the-art diesel-electric propulsion submarines.

The implementation of Project 75 has been facilitated through transfer of technology agreements with France, which were established in 2005. These agreements have enabled India to utilize its indigenous resources while benefiting from French technological expertise. The project not only serves the purpose of strengthening India’s naval forces but also aims to enhance the country’s knowledge and capabilities in submarine technology through knowledge transfer and collaboration with international partners.

History of Project 75

In 1998, India negotiated a contract with French defense contractors DCNS to manufacture four Scorpene-class attack submarines. This formed the base of Project 75.

  • However, in 1999, after the end of the Kargil War, the Government of India devised and approved a new plan for thirty years.
  • Self-reliance has been India’s forte since Independence, and the new plan was conceived aligning with the same principle.
  • This plan saw two parallel production lines – one under the pre-existing Project 75 and another under the new Project 75 India (more popularly known as Project 75i).

Project 75: 30-year Submarine Plan

In 1999, the Cabinet Committee on Security outlined a 30 years plan for submarine manufacturing. The plan included designing and building 24 conventional submarines by the end of 2030.

  • Project 75 and Project-75i are two sister projects under this plan.
  • Project 75 aimed to build six conventional diesel-electric fuelled Scorpene-class attack submarines and was built by the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL).
  • These are meant to be the most modern conventional submarines.
  • Of the 24 submarines, 18 will be conventional, while the remaining six will be nuclear-powered.
  • India has about 14 conventional submarines, of which only seven are working, and only one nuclear-powered submarine, INS Arihant.
  • The only other nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine INS Arihant will soon be commissioned.
  • The Russian nuclear-powered submarine taken on lease by India is apparently on its way back home.

6 Submarine Names List in Project 75

Project 75 was aimed at building six conventional Scorpene-class attack submarines. The current status of the six submarines is as follows-

  • The first submarine under Project 75 was INS Kalvari. It was delivered in 2015 and joined the service in December 2017.
  • Within only two years, in September 2019, INS Khanderi, the 2nd submarine under Project 75, was deployed.
  • The third submarine, INS Karanj, was inducted in March 2021.
  • INS Vela, the fourth submarine under Project 75, joined the fleet in November 2021.
  • The fifth submarine, INS Vagir, commenced in November 2020 and is anticipated to be appointed by the latter quarter of 2022.
  • The sixth submarine completed under the project is INS Vagsheer. It is a reincarnation of the first Vagsheer, withdrawn from service in April 1997. The vessel is titled after the name of a fatal deep sea hunter in the Indian Ocean and was launched in April 2022.
  • Despite all the progress that has been made, Project 75 is still a long overdue project that should have been finished by now.

Project 75i

Project 75i, also known as the advanced submarine project, is a follow-on initiative to Project 75 undertaken by the Indian Navy. The project aims to build submarines larger than the Scorpene class attack submarines of Project 75 and enhance India’s indigenous submarine building capabilities.

  • Project 75i seeks to bring in the latest technologies and improve the understanding and development of submarines in India.
  • The Naval Group of France, which had participated in Project 75, has withdrawn from Project 75i as they did not meet India’s Request for Proposal (RFP).
  • The French Navy’s submarines do not utilize a propulsion system, which does not align with India’s requirements for the project.
  • The participation of Russian and Spanish companies in the bidding process for Project 75i is also uncertain.
  • The submarines of Project 75i are intended to incorporate Air-Independent Propulsion (AIP) technology.
  • India requires the AIP technology to be sea-proven and based on fuel cells, which was not met by the French Naval Group.
  • The developments surrounding Project 75i took place ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to France in May 2022.

Difference Between Project 75 and Project 75i

Though they are sister projects, there are a few pivotal differences between Project 75 and Project 75i.

Project 75 Project – 75I
Project 75, which began after the transfer of the technology contract with France in October 2005, is nearing its completion. It is estimated to be accomplished by the end of the year 2022. Project-75I is an ambitious project of the Government of India and is currently uncertain. However, it is a long overdue project that is assumed to take approx two years to begin. The estimable period is by the end of the year 2024.
The Project is being tackled by Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) in Mumbai, Maharashtra. After the Government of India approved Project-75I, two Indian companies were shortlisted per the requirements.
The company is getting help from the French Naval Group, formerly DCNS. The companies were Larsen and Toubro, a private company, and the government-owned Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited.
The French Naval Group established a branch in India known as Naval Group India. However, as the Naval Group of France withdrew and announced its inability to participate as per the RFP, the Project remains in limbo.
The company has its headquarters in Mumbai. Its sole purpose is to provide India with the necessary technology to build submarines. The Project-75I submarines are planned to have fuel cells and an Air-Independent Propulsion System.
The Project 75 submarines, the thought of excellent quality with modern technology, have diesel-electric propulsion, making it necessary for the vessels to come to the water’s surface every 2-3 hours to gather oxygen for the fuel. The concept is that being independent of air allows the submarines to remain underwater for up to a fortnight. This would ensure greater stealth and lethality.

Project 75: Specialities of Scorpene-Class Submarines

Project 75 focuses on the construction of Scorpene class submarines, which are considered among the world’s most technologically advanced conventional submarines. These submarines possess exceptional capabilities and features that contribute to their effectiveness in underwater warfare.

  • Scorpene class submarines are equipped with meticulously guided weapons, superior stealth, and low noise radiation levels.
  • They employ advanced acoustic silencing techniques, making them difficult to detect by enemy SONAR systems.
  • The submarines boast acute attack abilities, enabling them to engage in precise and powerful strikes on both surface and underwater targets.
  • They are equipped with torpedoes utilizing the latest technologies and guided missiles for accurate long-range engagements.
  • The submarines serve multiple roles, including intelligence gathering, area surveillance, underwater mine laying, and combat operations.
  • With a maximum speed of approximately 20 knots, they can travel underwater and dive to depths below 350 meters.
  • The Scorpene class submarines have the capability to remain submerged for up to two weeks, thanks to their Air-Independent Propulsion (AIP)-based systems.
  • The AIP technology eliminates the need for frequent resurfacing to recharge batteries, significantly enhancing their stealth and operational endurance.

Importance of Project 75 and Project 75i

Project 75 and Project 75i hold significant importance in the Indian defense and economy fields. These projects aim to boost the Indian economy, enhance self-reliance in defense manufacturing, and protect the Indo-Pacific region.

  • Boosting the Indian Economy: Projects 75 and 75i contribute to economic growth by strengthening the industrial sector and promoting the formation of a tiered ecosystem for submarine industry in India.
  • Self-Reliance: By reducing dependency on foreign companies and imports, these projects promote the usage of indigenous resources and align with the Indian Government’s Make in India policy. This enhances self-reliance in defense capabilities.
  • Protecting the Indo-Pacific: With China’s powerful navy and its dominance in the region, it becomes crucial for India to strengthen its naval forces. Projects 75 and 75i, with submarines equipped with advanced technologies, serve as a strategic deterrent and help safeguard the Indo-Pacific region from Chinese domination.
  • Strategic Deterrent: The acquisition of submarines with the latest technologies bolsters India’s defense capabilities, particularly in underwater warfare. This enhances India’s ability to counter potential threats and acts as a deterrent against adversaries.

Aim of Project 75 and Project 75i

The main aim of Project 75 and Project 75i is to provide the Indian private sector with the ability to design and develop complicated and technologically advanced warcraft to meet the needs of the Indian Army in the future.

  • Given that India imports almost all the arms, it has been a goal of the Government of India to reduce the import of arms and promote domestic manufacturing of military equipment.
  • Therefore, reducing the import of military equipment would economically benefit India.
  • This would mean a reduction in national expenditure while promoting the export of warcraft with the latest technologies in the future and Indian resources for better usage.

Project 75 UPSC

Project 75 is a crucial topic in the UPSC exam that candidates must familiarize themselves with. It refers to the Indian Navy’s initiative to build advanced submarines under the Project 75i. This project holds significant importance in the defense sector and the modernization of the Indian Navy.

Project 75 comes under Science and Technology portion of the UPSC Syllabus and is crucial for the exam. Candidates must check the progress made under Project 75 and Project 75i through Current Affairs. Understanding the details of Project 75i is essential for answering related questions in the exam. Proper preparation in this area will enhance candidates’ knowledge and enable them to tackle questions effectively.

Project 75 UPSC Questions

Project 75 is a crucial topic in the UPSC exam. Candidates should study it thoroughly, learn its history and significance. Understanding the concepts will help in answering questions accurately during the exam. By reviewing UPSC previous year’s question papers, candidates can identify question patterns and get an idea of the types of questions asked.

Question: Yard 11878, the 4th submarine under Project 75, was relinquished to the Indian Navy in November 2021. What is the number of submarines of Scorpion design developed under Project 75? (A) 4, (B) 5, (C) 6, (D) 7

Answer: (C) 6

Question: With reference to Project 75 India (Project-75 I), consider the following statements: (1) It is a follow-on of Project 75 Kalavari class submarines for the Indian Navy, (2) Under this project, the Indian Navy intends to build six nuclear-powered submarines in Indian shipyards, (3) It is part of a 30-year submarine-building plan that ends in 2030.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct? (A) 2 only, (B) 1 and 3 only, (C) 1, 2 and 3, (D) 1 and 2 only

Answer: (B) 1 and 3 only

Question for UPSC Mains: Project 75 aims to enhance the Indian Navy’s submarine capabilities. Discuss the objectives and significance of Project 75 in strengthening India’s maritime defense strategy.

Question for UPSC Mains: What are the key challenges faced by India in the implementation of Project 75, and how can they be overcome? Analyze the technological, financial, and strategic aspects involved in the successful execution of this ambitious submarine program.

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