Union Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar commissioned indigenously-built INS Chennai in Mumbai on Monday morning.

“This is a historic day for the Indian Navy, commissioning of the INS Chennai commissioned into Navy,” Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said on the occasion.

Talking about the deteriorating relations with Pakistan, Parrikar said that the country was ‘not taking initiative to fire upon unless fired on’,

“Temperature has cooled down, hope it cools down further. PM made efforts,people criticised him for that too but he took initiative. We would welcome good relations with any neighbour,” he said. “Two neighbours being friendly always helps, but at the same time, not at the cost of national security,” he added.

Indigenously designed and constructed Kolkata-class guided-missile destroyers, INS Chennai has been built by Mazagaon Dock Shipbuilders Limited, Mumbai. Upon its commissioning, INS Chennai will be placed under the operational and administrative control of the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command.

INS Chennai has a length of 164 meters and displacement of over 7,500 tonnes. Armed with supersonic Surface-to-Surface BrahMos missiles and Barak-8 Surface to Air missiles, INS Chennai boasts of indigenously developed anti-submarine weapons and sensors, Hull Mounted Sonar ‘HUMSA-NG’, Heavyweight Torpedo Tube Launchers, Rocket Launchers and Towed Arrau sonar capability. The ship has been fitted with indigenously developed Kavach and Mareech for defence against missiles and torpedos and can carry and operate up to two multi-role helicopters.