INS Sindhukirti Submarine to be refitted at Hindustan Shipyard – 10 things to know

The Sindhukirti Submarine will be battle-ready after the refit and will assume its rightful position in the active submarine fleet of the Indian Navy.

INS Sindhukirti sub to get refitted at HSL. Ten things you want to know
INS Sindhukirti is the third Kilo Class Diesel Electric Submarine and is one of the oldest submarines of the Indian Navy. (Courtesy: Twitter/Chairman HSL)

In another significant stride towards the realisation of ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’, the Ministry of Defence  (MoD) has just made signed a contract for the Normal Refit of the Sindhukirti Submarine, at the Hindustan Shipyard (HSL) located in Visakhapatnam. This project is estimated to cost a whopping Rs 934 crore and will see the rejuvenation of the 3rd Kilo Class Diesel Electric Submarine.

Upon the completion of the refit, the Sindhukirti Submarine will be battle-ready and will assume its rightful position in the active submarine fleet of the Indian Navy. According to the MoD the primary objective of this refit is to develop alternate repair facilities for submarines, thus enhancing the Navy’s operational readiness. This project will pave the way for the undertaking of Medium refit with Life Certification at HSL.

Notably, over 20 Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) have been brought on board for this project, providing employment opportunities for a staggering 1,000 man days per day, for the duration of the project. This move demonstrates the Government’s unwavering commitment to boosting local enterprise and creating employment opportunities while bolstering the nation’s defense capabilities.

10 things you want to know about Sindhukirti Submarine

  1. This is the third Kilo Class Diesel Electric Submarine and is one of the oldest submarines of the Indian Navy and was acquired from the erstwhile Soviet Union back in 1990.
  2. A submarine of the similar class was earlier refitted with modern sensors, electronic systems as well as weapons.
  3. It has the capability to launch torpedoes, lay mines and also fire missiles.
  4. This is slower than a nuclear submarine, can carry 70 personnel and has the capability to remain on a mission for almost 40 days. However, once in 24 hours it has to come near the sea water surface to get rid of fumes from its diesel engines which are ‘snorted’ out. And at the same time get rid of the stale air and take in fresh air from outside.
  5. According to the Indian Navy the submarine is no luxury liner as it was designed in an era where comfort was an afterthought and every inch is covered with machinery.
  6. There are hundreds of batteries in the battery pit and each weighs around 900 kilos.
  7. There are no showers and one toilet to be used by 70 personnel.
  8. The clothes the crew wears are light blue in colour and are disposed off once in three days.
  9. Like other Kilo class submarines, this is slower than nuclear submarines. Underwater its speed cannot be more than 31 kms per hour.
  10. The main advantage of this class of submarine is their discreetness. This means it operates far quieter.


Earlier, the submarine had spent around nine years at the shipyard for mid-life refit between 2006-2015. And with the latest round of refit according to MoD it would help to develop alternate repair facilities for submarines and is also a step towards undertaking medium refit with life certification at the shipyard.

The shipyard has invested in modernizing its infrastructure and in 2015 had a tie up with Hyundai Heavy Industries of South Korea to further improve its functioning and in the same year had handed over a refitted submarine to the Indian Navy at a cost of Rs 900 crore. According to reports HSL has posted its highest ever turnover of Rs 755 crore with a net profit of Rs 50.78 crore for FY2022.

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First published on: 14-03-2023 at 17:39 IST
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