After 36 years, Indian Navy’s frontline missile destroyer INS Ranjit to be decommissioned

CHENNAI : INS Ranjit, the Indian Navy’s frontline missile destroyer, will be decommissioned at the naval dockyard in Visakhapatnam on May 6 after having served for 36 years.

INS Ranjit was the third of the five Kashin-class destroyers built by erstwhile USSR, and was commissioned in 1983,  a statement issued by the navy Thursday said.

INS Ranjit was constructed as Yard 2203 in the 61 Communards shipyard in the town of Nikolev in present-day Ukraine. The keel of the ship was laid on 29 June 1977 and she was launched on 16 June 1979. The ship was given its Russian name “Lovkly” which means “Agile”, the Navy said in the statement.

The ship was commissioned as INS Ranjit on September 15, 1983, with Captain Vishnu Bhagwat at the helm. He would go on to serve as the Chief of Naval Staff between 1996-98.

With a motto of ‘Sada Rane Jayate’ or ‘Ever Victorious in Battle’, INS Ranjit was at the forefront of keeping the nation secure and participated in a number of operations, it said. Some of these include IPKF operations and Operation Talwar during Kargil conflict. In 2003, the ship was deployed off Mozambique to provide security cover for the African Union Summit.

The ship was also actively deployed as part of relief operations after the 2004 tsunami and cyclone Hud-hud in 2014. In recognition of her service, the ship was awarded Unit Citation in 2003-04 and 2009-10, the release said.

The naval ensign and the commissioning pennant would be lowered for the last time on May 9 onboard INS Ranjit.

Last month, the Indian Navy had launched guided missile destroyer Imphal, the third ship under Project 15-B, at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders in Mumbai.