India all set to lease second Akula class SSN from Russia
Defense Ministry sources confirmed that India and Russia soon sign a contract to lease one more Akula class nuclear attack submarine to Indian Navy for next ten years. Defense Minister's from both India and Russia will discuss about the lease contract in early November during the Defense ministers Russian Visit, and the contract will be signed in December when the Indian PM and officials visit to Russia. However Indian Navy will receive the sub only after 2018, after completing the modernization and training the Indian Navy crew's.
Indian Navy is looking to induct one more Nuclear attack submarine for Carrier escort duties. Navy already operates a Akula class submarine named Nerpa, Indian designation is INS Chakra. which was leased from Russia back in 2012 as a leased period of 10 years. The second leased submarine also the same Akula class it's either the Kashalot or the Iribis. However sources confirmed that Improved Akula class submarine Kashalot will be inducted into Indian Navy.
Navy insisted the government about the shortage of Submarines in the fleet. Most of the Indian Submarines are not capable to conduct long range patrols since they are diesel powered. While the lone SSN always has a duty of escorting the high value Aircraft carrier from enemy underwater threats. By the way India soon to commission another aircraft carrier INS Vikrant. The Carrier almost finished in construction and final touch up's going on. The Ship scheduled to conduct weapon trails and Air craft landing and take off trails. INS Vikrant already completed most of the sea trails.
The Kashalot is an improved Akula class SSN. Same like the Nerpa/Chakara. Which is modernized in earlier days with hydrodynamic sensors, modernized Skat 3 sonar systems and better equipment which makes the submarine more silent. The Akula's are more quieter than the American improved Los Angeles class attack submarines.
Even if the contract signed this year. Indian Navy should await two to three years to induct the Submarine under Indian Flag. The Ship needs to be modernized with latest control systems and some Repairing works. Which makes the ships combat capable to next ten years without the need of any refit's. Also India would send some Indian Navy crew's to Russia for training. By they way all of these procedures would take nearly three years.
The leased variant of Akula comes with eight 533mm Torpedo tubes. While the Russian Akula's comes with four 533mm torpedo's and four 650mm nuke torpedo's. The Type 65 torpedo's is not available for export due to International arms control regulations. The leased variant of Akula can hold some 40 torpedo's in it's arms cache. Since long range missions require more torpedo's for defensive/offensive operations.
Same like others, The Akula also can capable to launch Klub class anti ship or land attack cruise missiles from it's torpedo tube. All of the Indian Submarine's has such capability's for long range interception. The Akula's can also lays mines for trapping enemy submarines and escape from enemy chase. The Ship also have manpad missiles to engage low flying helicopters and anti submarine planes. Firing the MANPAD needs the ship to be surfaced.
Also It's believed that Russia may sell those submarines to India once the ten year lease period expires. The deal value of the ten years lease period estimated more than billions of dollars, except the operating cost.