Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Tuesday, Jul 02, 2002
Air defence ship: CSL council wants early clearance for revised estimate
Sajeev Kumar V.
KOCHI, July 1
THE Cochin Shipyard Joint Action Council against privatisation has urged the visiting Parliamentary Committee on Defence and Security for its immediate intervention in getting an early approval of the revised estimate for the construction of the Air Defence Ship (ADS) proposed to be built in the yard for the Indian Navy.
In a memorandum submitted to the Parliamentary Committee, Mr V.B. Cherian, General Convenor of the Action Council, said the revised estimate of Rs 3,500 crore for the construction of ADS as per the requirements and suggestions of the Navy was awaiting clearance from the Cabinet Committee on Security. If the revised estimate was approved now, the construction could be started next year and completed within five years, he said.
He pointed out that the letter of intent on the ADS was received by Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL) in 1999. The initial estimate for the project was Rs 1,300 crore. For the infrastructure development, an amount of Rs 32.7 crore was sanctioned to CSL on two occasions.
Utilising this amount, CSL had constructed a Marine Coating Shop equipped with most modern machinery, completed the extension of 150-tonne crane track, movable roofing of Outfit Shop, construction of accommodation for the naval team etc.
An additional amount of Rs 105 crore had to be released immediately for the completion of other activities such as positioning a second CNC cutting machine, plate blending machine, 300-tonne crane and 40-tonne crane etc. The contract for providing aviation facility on the ship was also to be finalised.
For the completion of all these activities and early construction of ADS, speedy approval of the revised estimate was highly necessary. In the wake of the proposed construction of ADS, CSL had assumed a very strategic position in the national defence of the country. Leaving such strategic activity like construction of ADS at the hands of the private sector would have a detrimental effect on the national security, Mr Cherian said.
Therefore, the Action Council requested the Committee to prevail upon Parliament to desist from the disinvestment of privatisation of this public sector unit.
Since its inception, CSL had built and delivered eight major ships and many small vessels.
Besides making profits continuously during the years 1996-97 to 2001-02, the yard contributed to the national exchequer a sum of Rs 75 crore by way of sales tax, customs and excise duty and income tax.
During the year, the yard could reduce the construction time of bulk carriers from the earlier 65 months to 24 months as in the case of the 10th ship currently under construction.
Send this article to Friends by E-Mail
Stories in this Section
The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | Home |
Copyright © 2002, The
Hindu Business Line. Republication or redissemination of the contents of
this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of
The Hindu Business Line