SOURCE: MANJUNATH REDDDY/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG
A Report prepared by ” The Hindu ” if confirmed, then Japanese firms Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kawasaki Heavy Industries have both responded to India’s quest for acquiring six new stealth Conventional submarines and will take part in the tender process.
Both companies jointly have developed Japan Maritime Self Defense Force’s Soryu-Class Submarines which is considered among deadliest of the Diesel submarine in the production. While report failed to report if Soryu-Class Submarines have been offered to India or Soryu technology based submarine export variant will be on offer it does mark change in Japan’s attitude towards India’s in the export of its weapons.
Soryu class in comparison with German 214 or Naval Groups Scorpene, or even with the Russian improved Kilo class Amur submarines, Soryu-class is considerably larger than all the competing submarines thus have longer endurance and weapons carrying capacity.
Since BrahMos VL (Vertical Launch ) SLCM (Submarine Launched Cruise Missile ) will be a mandatory addition to all Six submarines to be acquired many Defence Analysts are predicting that Submarines asked under Project-75I will be bigger than Kalvari-class submarines currently under production under earlier Project-75.
Soryu class offered to India will definitely be a highly modified one from the original to add Indian weapons systems and other sensors. But it also will raise few eye brows in Bejing since this will be for the first time India and Japan are collaborating on the transfer of high tech offensive equipment’s which will be prescribed has serious threat perception to Chinese Naval Surface and sub-surface fleet in Indian ocean region.
Since Soryu class submarines have been developed specifically to Hunt Chinese submarines and Warships, Chinese Navy in particular ranks Soryu class submarines has one of the greatest challenges it will face in the South China Sea and Asia-Pacific to keep its dominance in that part of the region.
Modified Soryu class submarines will only increase China’s woes in its ambitions to dominate Indian Ocean region in the guise of protecting its trade and its investments in the region. Even a water-downed export variant of Soryu class submarines developed by India will have that psychological fear factor in the crew of Chinese Naval fleet in Indian ocean region.
Whether India buys Soryu class submarines or selects another able candidate from other five bidders in the race to supply Six Next Generation submarines to India it might finally open doors for possible collaboration with India for Japan in other weapons development or transfer which due to Japan’s non-commitment issues were not able to make any headway’s even when both prescribe China has its biggest threat in the region.