Vietnam to receive gifted Khukri-class missile corvette from India


The INS Kirpan (P44), one of the Khukri-class corvettes of the Indian Navy. Photo c/o Overt Defense.

As part of improving defense relations, the Indian Minister of Defence has confirmed that it would be transferring one of its Khukri-class missile corvettes to Vietnam.

This was announced during the bilateral meeting between Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and his Vietnamese counterpart General Phan Van Gang in New Delhi on 19 June 2023, which was focused on strengthening defense ties and discussing regional security issues including the maritime disputes in the South China Sea, as well as potential cooperation on defense industrial research and  production.

The corvette, which was identified to the be INS Kirpan (P44), is scheduled for decommissioning from the Indian Navy soon out of the three remaining ships of the class. The first ship of the class, INS Khukri (P49) was already decommissioned in 2021 and was converted to a museum.

The ship is expected to boost the overall capability of the Vietnam People’s Navy (VPN) by having additional platform to perform naval defense roles including patrols and naval warfare. The transfer also signifies that the two other ships of the class could be transferred or sold to Vietnam in the near future.

The Khukri-class was design and built in India by Mazagon Dock Limited and Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers, with 65% local content including the French-designed diesel engines which were manufactured under license in India.

They are 91.1 meters long, have a maximum beam of 10.5 meters, and displaces at around 1,400 tons. They are powered by two diesel engines allowing a maximum speed of 24 knots and a maximum range of 4,000 nautical miles at cruising speed of 16 knots.

It sensors and weapons are mostly of Soviet / Russian origin which includes the MR-352 Cross Dome air-search radar, Garpun B surface-search radar, and MR-123 Bass Tilt fire control radar. 

They are equipped with a Soviet/Russian AK-176 76mm naval gun, two AK-630 30mm close-in weapon systems, four launchers of P-15 Termit anti-ship missiles, and a launcher for 9K32 Strela-2 man-portable air defense system.

It also has a helicopter deck which allows the take-off and landing of a light helicopter.

The INS Kirpan was laid down on November 1985, launched on August 1988, and commissioned with the Indian Navy on January 1991. 

Frontier India
[2] Voice of America
[3] Overt Defense

Vietnam to receive gifted Khukri-class missile corvette from India Vietnam to receive gifted Khukri-class missile corvette from India Reviewed by Asia Pacific Defense Journal on June 23, 2023 Rating: 5

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