In $2 billion deal, India is set to acquire a second Akula 2 nuclear-powered attack submarine from Russia. The contract for this, which has been unannounced so far, was finalised in Goa along with a slew of other defence deals worth more than $5 billion which have been made public.
According to Alexei Nikolski, a columnist with the reputed Russian daily Vedomosti, “According to a source in the Russian defence industry, the long discussed lease to transfer a multipurpose Project 971 nuclear submarine to India from the Russian Navy was signed in Goa.”
The Indian Navy already operates an Akula-Class nuclear submarine, INS Chakra (formerly known as K-152 Nerpa), which was leased from Russia and commissioned on April 4, 2012 after India paid for its completion and sea-trials. The lease of the 8,140 ton submarine was signed for a period of 10 years and with the lease set to expire in a few years, the Indian Navy has been keen acquire a second Russian nuclear submarine.
For the last several months, there have been reports that the Indian Navy was keen on leasing the much more advanced Project 885 Yasen Class nuclear attack submarine, the newest class of submarine to enter Russia’s arsenal.