Andhra Pradesh First a Celebration. Positive News, Facts & Achievements about Seemandhra, Coastal Andhra, Telugu People and all the People of Andhra Pradesh – here at Home and Overseas
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    Showing the way: Kakarala Prasad and his wife Uma Devi at Venkataraghavapuram near Gudivada in Krishna district on Monday. | Photo Credit: CH_VIJAYA BHASKAR

    Showing the way: Kakarala Prasad and his wife Uma Devi at Venkataraghavapuram near Gudivada in Krishna district on Monday. | Photo Credit: CH_VIJAYA BHASKAR

    He now focusses on telemedicine centre in native village

    In 1959, Dr. Kakarala Prasad, son of K. Bhaskara Rao and Venkata Subbayamma, passed out of the ZP High School Vennanapudi, which hardly had basic infrastructure, with a Secondary School Leaving Certificate.

    Fifty-nine years later, on Monday, Dr. Prasad, a native of Ramapuram (now Venkata Raghava Puram, also birthplace of legendary actor Akkineni Nageswara Rao) was at the same school in the neighbouring village interacting with the students and the staff. It is now a “Success School” and offers Telugu and English mediums of instruction. The school is all praise for the veteran doctor because of his contribution to its development over three decades.

    The school has buildings for classrooms, kitchen and laboratories and even a newly inaugurated cycle stand developed with his contributions.

    It is the first school in the State to get G+1 building with the contribution of Dr. Prasad under Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s Janmabhumi programme in 1998. The school, named after his father, was inaugurated by Mr. Naidu.

    Much before that, Dr. Prasad, who has been practising in the U.S. for the past 41 years as paediatrician, gave away his five-acre land and house in Ramapuram for a clinic developed by him. The clinic was later upgraded as Primary Health Centre by the government and is still the only healthcare solution for many villages nearby.

    “This is an addiction. Once you do something for your village you feel like doing more and more of such activities,” Dr. Prasad sums up about his service. He also funded road development and sanitation projects in Ramapuram.

    At 74, he came all the way from the U.S. to visit the PHC to inquire about the infrastructure required for setting up a telemedicine centre.

    “It was my friend Bhanu Prasad who introduced me to the joy of helping others. When we were studying in Vijayawada, we gave free food for engineering students. Now we [friends’ circle] are running a charitable trust in his name that has a fund of ₹50 lakh,” Dr. Prasad says.

    “In a bid to give back to my village, I paved the way for the clinic. Now I am going to meet the Health Minister to seek help for a new building for the Kakinada government hospital which has become congested. The alumnus of the Rangaraya Medical College (RMC) are ready to fund half of the ₹40-crore project,” Dr. Prasad, who graduated in medicine from the RMC, says.

    Dr. Prasad is also involved in philanthropical activities in Ohio where he has been living for the past several decades.

    Apart from voluntarily teaching paediatrics at the University of Toledo, Dr. Prasad also provides scholarships to students there.

    His services were recognised by the Telugu Association of North America (TANA) recently and he received the prestigious Dr. Guthikonda Ravindranath Award for Community Service through initiatives like Adopt-a-village, Adopt-a-child and others.

    His wife Uma Devi and children also joined him in the development of the village. The PHC in Ramapuram does not have a resident doctor since long and telemedicine centre is seen as a solution to the problem.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> Cities> Vijayawada / by Tharun Boda / Venkata Parhava Puram (Krishna District) / January 09th, 2018

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    Once upon a time there was a huge steam ship filled with passengers leaving a quaint town. But, the ill-fated ship sank with all of its 400 passengers on board. Ever since, the location where the ship sank in the sea has been haunted, with the souls of the gloomy, dead passengers haunting whoever passes by at night. They moan and take out their anger on the living, begging for attention and some relief from their after-life.

    Thus goes the legend of a mysterious wreck in the Bay of Bengal popular among the fishing community of  Visakhapatnam.  And till recently, the wreck was nothing more than an apparition; a bed-time tale told to scare toddlers. Or so it was believed. But Vizag-based scuba diver, Balaram Naidu claims he’s discovered the remnants of that doomed ship lying in the Bay of Bengal.

    “I don’t want to reveal where the wreck is yet, but the fishing community here has always had many interesting tales to tell about it,” says Balaram Naidu, owner of an adventure sports firm in the city.

    From the pictures of the remnants of the said wreck that Balaram shared with Vizag Times, one can see various parts of the ship scattered around. “The shaft, motor, furnace and the rest of the main body are intact. The keel, decks and other parts of the ship have spread all over the place. The furnace even holds beautiful aqua life in it and is filled with fishes, eels and turtles,” explains Balaram.

    But how did the adventure enthusiast even find the wreck in the first place? “We have been struggling to find wrecks in the sea for three years now and been taking the help of the fishing community to find them. But they can’t dive deep into the water, so they point out possible wreck sites to us and we dive to see if they’re actually there. We learnt about this site from the fishermen’s tales. We found the debris during our first few dives and it took us a while to find the wreck too,” he says, elated.

    While the mention of the eerie wreck brings out excitement in Balaram, it incites fear in the fishing community. The fishermen are dead sure that this is the sunken ship that their forefathers warned them about. “I don’t know how old the ship is and when it sunk there. But generations of our children have grown up listening to tales of how 400 passengers on board died when this ship sank. I heard the story from my father, who heard the story from my grandfather and so on. My father is 85-years-old now, I think the ship sunk 300 years ago maybe. But this is the first time I’ve heard of someone actually finding it,” says Satti, a fisherman.

    But why does the ship-wreck incite fear in these fishermen? “It’s not just me, anyone who has fished around that area will tell you that they feel scared to venture there. Because a lot of us who fished in that area at night, have felt someone hitting us on our backs. That’s why we avoid venturing there at night. Even when we do go that side, we go in large numbers and prefer not to catch fish there.”

    Balaram however wants to find the ship’s origins and believes it sunk while it was leaving Vizag harbour. “The shaft is towards Vizag, this could mean that it sunk while it was leaving the harbour. I want to find out more details about the ship and I’m hoping its records can be found at the court. They will hopefully have the navigation records.”

    For Balaram the finding of a coral in the sea few weeks back and now, the wreck just reinstates the fact that Vizag has the potential to be an attractive dive site. “In fact, it could be the best dive site in India,” he says. “Scuba divers love reef diving and wreck diving, and the latter is something a lot of divers opt for because it’s exciting.”

    Previously too, Balaram Naidu had told Vizag Times that he is planning to present a proposal to the tourism department to develop Vizag as a wreck diving destination. If the proposal does indeed materialise, then civilians would be able to access the wreck of PNS Ghazi, that only divers of Indian Navy are privy to so far.

    “I know for a fact that the remains of Ghazi lie 30 meters deep in the ocean and that the debris is entangled in fishing nets,” he says. Apart from the wreck of PNS Ghazi, and now this steam ship, the debris of a goods ship lies at the continental beach near Dolphin Hill.

    “I will soon submit a proposal imploring the Tourism Department to turn the ship wreck we discovered now and PNS Ghazi into wreck diving sites. It can transform the tourism scenario not just in Vizag but all of India,” he sums it up.

    source: / The Times of India / News> City News> Visakhapatnam News / by Neeshita Nyayapati / TNN / January 06th, 2018

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    January 6th, 2018adminBusiness & Economy, World Opinion
    Apartments up for sale for South Korean nationals in Anantapur. | Photo Credit: R_V_S_PRASAD

    Apartments up for sale for South Korean nationals in Anantapur. | Photo Credit: R_V_S_PRASAD

    Builders cash in on rising accommodation needs of KIA Motors officials

    A “mini South Korean township” is coming up in Anantapur town, about 60 km from the under-construction automobile manufacturing facility of South Korean car major, KIA Motors, near Penukonda.

    With the work on the KIA factory on the outskirts of Penukonda going on at a fast pace, the arrival of Korean nationals to oversee the work at the site has increased, and so has the demand for accommodation. Signboards in Korean language have sprung up offering such lodging.

    “We have no suitable facilities here for foreigners, especially senior and middle management of KIA. Penukonda doesn’t offer good accommodation choices, and the offices at the construction site aren’t good enough to house them,” said a senior Indian official of KIA who did not wish to be identified.

    In the initial days, officials were put up in guest houses, government and private, at Puttaparthy and Anantapur. But with more South Korean nationals coming, builders with constructed buildings on the outskirts of Anantapur started to offer apartment complexes as guest houses.

    “We cashed in on the opportunity of housing the Korean nationals who would eventually want to bring their families and settle down close to the factory and the nearest city. We then started our new venture at Ramnagar and decided to even advertise in the Korean language,” said Prashant Mallem, who even employed a Korean national as a facilitator-cum-marketing agent for his apartments.

    It is estimated that 30 flats on the outskirts have been bought and occupied by Korean nationals, while almost a similar number have booked apartments.

    “Once the assembly line installation starts, a lot of South Koreans will be at work and need accommodation for a few months at least,” said Sung Min, a South Korean national, who works with a builder in Anantapur.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Andhra Pradesh / by V.K. Rakesh Reddy / Anantapur – January 06th, 2018

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    Association of Lady Entrepreneurs of India (ALEAP) will hold an international conference for women entrepreneurs with focus on innovation, incubation and industrialisation here from January 17 to January 19.

    Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and SAARC Secretary General Amjad Hussain B. Sial will attend.


    The objective of the conference is to educate women entrepreneurs on emerging technologies, innovative products and business models and trade opportunities for rapid industrialisation.

    Persons of national and international repute in the field of incubation and innovation, domain experts and others will share their experiences, case studies and success stories.

    The conference would provide an excellent platform for information, inspiration and interaction, said ALEAP local coordinator G. Srinivasa Rao.

    Details could be obtained by dialling 9247839834.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Andhra Pradesh / by Special Correspondent / Visakhapatnam – January 04th, 2018

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    Rahath Malladi will sing in 100 languages

    Young Rahath Malladi, an upcoming singer, will make an attempt to enter the Guinness Book of World Records by staging a musical concert in which he will be singing songs in 100 languages at Sri Rama Function Palace at Gandhinagar on January 6.

    He will be aiming to enter the book under ‘most languages sung in a concert’. He will be singing from 11 am. to 9 pm.

    The 14-year-old singer is recipient of awards such as Bala Ratna, Smart Champ, State‘s Best Child, Uthama Bala Ratna and Golden Child, for his achievements in singing, acting and oration. He was the anchor for Bol Baby Bol and has acted in a children’s film.

    Deputy Speaker Mandali Budda Prasad, Minister for Tourism Bhuma Akhila Priya will be the chief guests.

    Kuchibhotla Anand, Chairman, Kuchipudi Natyaramam, D. Vizia Bhaskar, Director, Department of Language and Culture, Golla Narayana Rao, secretary, Andhra Arts Academy, E. Siva Nagi Reddy, Chief Executive Officer, Cultural Centre of Vijayawada and Amaravati, are some of the distinguished guests.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States>Andhra Pradesh / by Special Correspondent / Vijayawada – January 03rd, 2018

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    A weaver displays a colourful sari at a handloom expo in Ongole on Thursday.

    A weaver displays a colourful sari at a handloom expo in Ongole on Thursday.

    Tie up with Amazon to market their handloom products

    Pushed to the brink, weavers of Chirala have reinvented themselves by going for a tie-up with a leading American electronic commerce and cloud computing company to improve the marketability for their eco-friendly handloom products, as the GST regime, which came close on the heels of demonetisation, has crippled the handloom sector.

    The going had been tough for the sector, thanks to unequal competition from powerloom players with Handlooms (Reservation of Articles for Production) Act implemented more in the breach than in observance, say a group of weavers from Chirala attending a national handloom expo, jointly organised by the Union and State Governments at the Kapu Kalyana mandapam here, till January 6.

    Pouring out their woes, they said the GST regime, which came close on the heels of demonetisation has further aggravated the problem, after demonetisation led to loss of purchasing power and reduced offtake since November last year.

    “GST on raw material and finished products had pushed up the cost of our products by 20 to 25%. As a result, we were forced to operate on thin or no profit margin to liquidate the stocks on hand to at least break even, while holding on to our existing customers,” says Indira Abhyudaya Silk Handloom Weavers Society president B. Shyam Sundar.

    “In this context, we decided to go for online marketing. Now we are a happier lot thanks to the tie-up with e-commerce retailer Amazon to realise better prices,” he told The Hindu.

    “’On receipt of orders online, we send by couriers the selected saris and dress material to online customers. On receipt of the products at the customer end, we get online credit of payments instantly without any hassles,” adds the head of the society with a membership of 128 weavers.

    Making a mention of the Geographic Indication tag enjoyed by their counterparts in Uppada, Mangalagiri, Venkatagiri and Dharmavaram, the weavers plead with the government for obtaining a GI tag for their products too to improve their visibility in the global market.

    They want the government to subsidise the cost of handloom products made with organic dyes, which cost four times more than the one made with chemical dyes.

    Though there are 127 registered exporters from the Chirala region with over 10,000 looms in operation, the department is planning to facilitate tie-up between 10 weavers cooperative societies with online shopping websites to start with to ensure assured market, department officials overseeing the expo add.

    Meanwhile, Handloom Assistant Director J. Sivanarayana says the government is mulling providing 20% discount on handloom products to liquidate the stocks with the cooperative societies.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> States> Andhra Pradesh / by S. Murali / December 29th, 2017

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    December 21st, 2017adminBusiness & Economy, World Opinion

    It will start with two 100-seaters in city, Vijayawada

    TemplateMonster, of the U.S., a $15 million company with specialisation in e-solutions, digital marketing and training, will soon launch its operations in Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada.

    “We will start with a 100-seater facility each in both the cities and later scale up the manpower to 500,” TemplateMonster’s India partner Satish Babu told The Hindu .

    He said initially the Andhra Pradesh Non-Resident Telugu (APNRT) Society promised to provide rented accommodation. In Visakhapatnam, it is likely to get space at Millennium Tower, which is on the verge of completion at Rushikonda.

    On future plans, he said they would explore acquiring a site to develop a big development centre in both the cities depending on the response to their operations.

    TemplateMonster CEO David Braun, who reached here to attend a two-day international startup workshop, said they were excited to invest in Andhra Pradesh, which was all set to emerge as the Silicon Valley of India.

    $1 million startup support

    Tech-Mark Training India in partnership with TemplateMonster is hosting the international startup workshop for which over 100 registrations had been received.

    The aim of the programme is to identify startups for mentorship, grooming and funding under a programme named YuvBharat, a project of Tech-Mark India, a sister concern of Tech_Mark Pte. Ltd. (Singapore).

    In support of Startup India, TemplateMonster, U.S., has partnered with YuvBharat to give $1 million worth of technology products, training and mentoring to enable startups to market their products and services globally.

    “We have an ambitious programme to create young entrepreneurs in India. We will give cash awards and certificates of excellence to three best startups, three best at ideation level and mementos and certificates of excellence to best three women startup entrepreneurs,” Mr. Babu, co-founder of Tech-Mark said.

    He said each startup registered with YuvBharat would get $1,000 worth of content management system, web, newsletter and business promotion to strengthen startup ecosystem.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> National> Andhra Pradesh / by Santosh Patnaik / Visakhapatnam – December 21st, 2017

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    Visakhapatnam :

    The state government has shortlisted 13 firms in the tourism sector to set up their ventures in Andhra Pradesh.
    The tourism projects range in size from Rs 20 crore to Rs 200 crore. Most of the projects are coming up along the city’s coastline.

    Firms from the United States and even from neighbouring Nepal find a mention on the list of shortlisted firms.

    Some of the projects include theme parks, resorts, go-karting tracks, five-star hotels and amusement parks

    The city’s excellent air, rail and road connectivity is one of the main reasons behind the tourism firms’ interest in setting up shop in Vizag.

    The AP tourism department in association with the sub-committee of AP Chambers of Commerce and Industry Federation (APCCIF) have received nearly 30 proposals from various places in the country during its recent stakeholders meet at various places including Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada and Hyderabad in October and November.

    After scrutinising those proposals, the authorities have finally zeroed in on these 13 firms.

    Tourism minister B Akhila Priya is likely to announce the names of the shortlisted firms at a formal meeting next week in Vijayawada on December 22 (Friday). The ministry would also interact with the representatives of the firms and would clarify the doubts and grievances of the representatives over the establishment of the projects in the specified time announced by the department.

    As per the new tourism policy rules, the government would allocate land to the firms, which in turn have to pay 5% of the land value as a lease amount to the government per year. For example, if the land value is Rs 1 crore, the firm will have to pay Rs 5 lakh as lease amount to the government.

    The government received proposals from nearly 30 firms. Nearly 80% of the 13 firms are showing interest to set up their projects in Visakhapatnam city. Nearly 80% of the tourism projects are located along the Vizag coast. The AP government will give land to the firms on a long term lease basis spanning about 33 years.

    APCCIF chairman G Sambasiva Rao told TOI that some of the firms are asking the government to reduce the lease amount to 3-4% of the land value. “The lease issue would be discussed soon in the next meet, mostly by next week. We want to see that all the projects are grounded by the next two years. Nearly 80% of the projects are coming up in Vizag and the remaining projects in neighbouring places like Vizianagaram,” Rao said.

    source: / The Times of India / News> City News> Visakhapatnam News / by V. Kamalakara Rao / TNN / December 18th, 2017

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    Lalita Vaswani, vice-president of World Birdstrike Association (South Asia), and Raman Emani, Director of BirdGard India Pvt Limited, briefing the media in Visakhapatnam on Wednesday. | Photo Credit: C.V.Subrahmanyam

    Lalita Vaswani, vice-president of World Birdstrike Association (South Asia), and Raman Emani, Director of BirdGard India Pvt Limited, briefing the media in Visakhapatnam on Wednesday. | Photo Credit: C.V.Subrahmanyam

    The first regional South Asian conference of the World Birdstrike Association (WBA) will be held in Visakhapatnam from Dec 11 to 13.

    The conference, supported by the Government of Andhra Pradesh, will deliberate on the problem of birds and wild animals posing a threat to aircrafts, particularly during landing and take-off of flights, Lalita Vaswani, Vice President of WBA-South Asia and WBA Member Raman Emani told the media here on Wednesday.

    They underlined the importance of creating awareness on the issue of bird strike among all stakeholders including farmers, town planners, organisations for the protection of nature and environment, apart from civil aviation authorities, military, aircraft and aerodrome operators at the regional, national and global levels.

    The stakeholders or their representatives from various countries would participate in the conference and deliberate on the issue and the measures being taken in their respective countries to tackle the problem. The meeting would provide a platform for exchange of ideas and practices being adopted at various airports across the globe to eliminate or minimise the risks.

    Ms. Lalita said that the deliberations made at the conference would be sent to the authorities concerned for implementation. The WBA conference in Mexico in 2014 had decided to strengthen regional cooperation with all stakeholders within a global framework in close cooperation with the national authorities. The Bird Strike Committees of Australia, Central and South America, Europe and North America were already cooperating on a regional level.

    Replying to queries, Mr. Raman said that the measures to reduce bird hits include: passive measures like prevention of dumping of wastes in the proximity of airports, not to allow tress close to the airport as they attract birds and keeping the grass low. The active measures include: bird repellents and lasers.

    “The water bodies, marshes and trees, close to the airport, provide the perfect setting for birds and other animal species to feed and rest,” he said.


    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> Cities> Visakhapatnam / December 07th, 2017

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    December 10th, 2017adminAmazing Feats, Records, All, World Opinion
    A file photo of INS Sindhukirti, seventh Sindhughosh-class submarine of Indian Navy, being towed in the channel for undertaking sea trials in Visakhapatnam. | Photo Credit: arranged

    A file photo of INS Sindhukirti, seventh Sindhughosh-class submarine of Indian Navy, being towed in the channel for undertaking sea trials in Visakhapatnam. | Photo Credit: arranged

    On December 8, 1967, when Commander K.S. Subramanian read out the commissioning warrant in freezing -15 degree Celsius at Vladivostok, submarine base in Russia then USSR, little did he know that he was heralding a force that would one day be a nuclear force and will complete the nuclear triad for the country. Cdr Subramanian commanded the first submarine of the Indian Navy INS Kalvari.

    The submarine arm or the silent arm of the Indian Navy is celebrating its golden jubilee this year, and in the last five decades it has grown from a couple of Foxtrot class submarines to possess the Arihant class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines (SSBN) to the state-of-the-art Scorpene-class submarines.

    The proposal to form a submarine arm was first envisaged in 1959 and a draft plan to acquire four submarines from UK at a cost of ₹16 crore with a recurring annual cost of ₹ 2 crore was moved. But it did not materialise, and it was again moved in 1962 and the government approved the proposal. A nine- member team led by Captain B.K. Dang was sent to UK to undergo training at HMS Dolphin. But the purchase proposal did not again materialise, as India wanted to buy the Porpoise or Oberon class and the British government offered the old ‘T’ class.

    It was only in 1964 that the Soviet government agreed for transfer by purchase for four ‘F’ class or Foxtrot-class submarines.

    About 16 officers and over 100 sailors received training at Vladivostok and a beginning was made when Cdr. K.S. Subramanian sailed into the Visakhapatnam harbour, braving 16,000 km of rough sea from Riga to Visakhapatnam, on June 6, 1968.

    The submarine arm of the Indian Navy came into operation at Visakhapatnam with the then Chief of Naval Staff Admiral A.K. Chatterjee laying the foundation stone for the submarine base.

    The silent arm grew with the induction of four more Foxtrot-class submarines such as INS Khanderi, Karanj and Kursura. All the four constituted the 8th Submarine Squadron and have played a key role during the 1970-71 Indo-Pak war. Today, all have been decommissioned and INS Kursura is transformed into a submarine museum and stands on Visakhapatnam beach.

    The first full-fledged submarine base had come into existence in the shape of INS Virbahu on May 19, 1971 at Visakhapatnam.

    The force grew with the acquisition of four more Foxtrot-class submarines from the then Soviet Union. INS Vela, Vagir, Vagli and Vaghsheer formed the formidable 9th Squadron with the base at Bombay now Mumbai.

    From the Foxtrot class, the navy graduated to procure and produce the German-based HDW 1500 class or also called as the SSKs attack submarines, in mid 1980s. Referred to as the Shishumar class, four of them Shishumar, Shankush, Shalki and Shankul formed the 10th Squadron of the arm, based in Mumbai.

    Keeping the tempo up, India negotiated with Russia to procure the Kilo-class or the Sindhughosh-class attack submarines. Equipped with the 3M-54 Klub (SS-N-27) anti-ship cruise missiles with a range of 220 km, for the first time India was on the offensive side of submarine warfare.

    While Sindhughosh, Sindhudhvaj, Sindhuraj, Sindhuvir , Sindhuratna and Sindhurakshak (exploded and sank in Mumbai harbour on14 August 2013) were based in Mumbai to form the 12th Squadron. Sindhukesari, Sindhukriti, Sindhuvijay and Sindhurashtra were based in Visakhapatnam to form the 11th Squadron.

    Nuclear era

    The submarine arm entering the nuclear era began with the leasing of INS Chakra an Akula-class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) from Russia in 1988 and it was based in Visakhapatnam.

    Sources in the navy said Chakra was taken on lease to train officers and men with the futuristic idea to build its own nuclear fleet. After the lease of INS Chakra expired, a second Akula Class nuclear submarine INS Chakra II was taken on lease from Russia in 2012.

    India built its first nuclear submarine INS Arihant under the Advanced Technology Vessel project at the Ship Building Centre in Visakhapatnam.

    INS Arihant the first of the expected five in the Arihant-class is indigenously built with Akula-class technology.

    Completing a full 50 years cycle, the Scorpène-class submarine is now being built for the Indian Navy at Mazagon Dock in Mumbai with French design, and they are named after the Kalvari class. The subs will be named after the first batch that served the navy such as Kalvari, Khanderi and Karanj.

    President to present colours

    As part of the celebrations, President Ram Nath Kovind will be awarding Presidential Colours to the Submarine Arm of the Indian Navy at a Colour Presentation ceremony to be held in Visakhapatnam on December 8.

    source: / The Hindu / Home> News> Visakhapatnam / by Sumit Bhattacharjee / Visakhapatnam – December 07th, 2017

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