Defence Minister to inaugurate infra projects at Karwar naval base

New Delhi, March 5 (IANS) Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will inaugurate several infrastructure projects at the Indian Navy’s base in Karnataka’s Karwar on Tuesday.

The infrastructure and facilities, being inaugurated as a part of the phase-IIA of ‘Project Seabird’, include two major piers and seven residential towers comprising 320 houses for naval officers and defence civilian personnel, and 149 single officers’ accommodation.

The phase-I of Project Seabird was designed to accommodate 10 ships and was successfully concluded in 2011. The infrastructure comprised a breakwater, a pier capable of berthing 10 ships, a 10,000-ton ship lift and dry berth, a naval ship repair yard, logistics and armament storage facilities, accommodation for 1000 personnel, a headquarters/depot organisation, and a 141-bed naval hospital, the Defence Ministry said in a statement.

The Cabinet Committee on Security’s approval for phase-IIA of the project was accorded the berthing of 32 ships and submarines, along with 23 yardcraft.

The phase-IIA initiatives are also directed towards constructing buildings and structures that adhere to the current guidelines set by the Environment Ministry and the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC), the Defence Ministry said.

The phase-IIA marine works include piers designed to accommodate ships and submarines, providing a berthing space of more than 6 km, technical facilities, electrical substations, switch gears, and support utilities, it added.

The centrepiece of phase-IIA works is an iconic ‘Covered Dry Berth’, standing at a height of 75 meters, taller than the Qutub Minar in Delhi, and spread over 33000 sq. metre land area. This dry berth is designed to facilitate simultaneous docking and comprehensive enclosed maintenance of up to four capital ships.

In phase-IIA, four different townships encompassing residential accommodations, with about 10,000 dwelling units of all types for officers, senior and junior sailors and defence civilian staff, are being constructed.

“The setting up of a green field dual-use Naval Air Station with 2700 metre runway and civil-enclave will provide air support to the aircraft embarked upon various Indian Navy ships and facilitate operations of commercial aviation flights,” the Defence Ministry said.

The ongoing construction activities at Naval Base Karwar have directly generated employment opportunities for approximately 7,000 personnel and indirectly led to around 20,000 jobs across the nation, it added.



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