The 98-metre ship is the sixth in the series of seven offshore patrol vessel designed and built in Chennai, and the largest ship in the fleet of ICG Thoothukudi station. It would augment maritime security in south Tamil Nadu and would help enhance ICG’s operational capabilities along the eastern seaboard in general and the Gulf of Mannar in particular, said a statement.
The ship is fitted with the state-of-the-art navigation and communication equipment, sensors and machinery. The ship is also designed to carry one twin engine helicopter and four high-speed boats, including two rigid hull inflatable boats, for swift boarding operations.
Vajra can attain a maximum speed of 23 knots and has an endurance of 5,000 nautical miles at economical speed. It is also capable of carrying pollution response equipment for oil spill response at sea, the statement said, adding that the vessel could also be used in search and rescue, law enforcement and maritime patrol in the exclusive economic zones in the Indian coastal region.
Commanded by Deputy Inspector General Alex Thomas, Vajra would function under the operational and administrative control of Coast Guard District Headquarters, Thoothukudi.