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06:23 AM, July 11, 2017
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INS Kalvari being escorted by Indian Navy tugboats (File photo)

Naval Group (formerly DCNS) is eyeing a multi-billion dollar maintenance contract of Indian Navy’s six Scorpene submarines under Project75 programme.

“The maintenance contract is still under works. By this year-end we will come to know how Navy wants to go about it,” Bernard Buisson, Managing Director, Naval Group was quoted as saying by the HinduBusinessLine news daily Monday.

Naval Group is also eyeing a repeat order of three more submarines under the P75 programme in collaboration with Mazagon Dock Ltd (MDL).

All six submarines, which are being built at the MDL with technology transfer from Naval Group, are expected to become part of Navy’s fleet by 2020.

The first of the submarines – INS Kalvari – is scheduled to be inducted in the Navy’s fleet next month. It was launched in October 2015.

The second submarine – INS Khanderi – was launched in January and is undergoing sea trials. It is expected to be delivered by next year.

Naval Group has already made a proposal to the Indian Navy on how they plan to go about the maintenance of the Scorpene submarines.

But, the Navy is being cautious in signing the deal with Naval Group because it has never outsourced the job of submarine maintenance to another firm, sources said.

They added that the cost of maintaining the Scorpene submarines will be much less compared to the maintenance of Russian submarines.

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