Indian Navy chooses Sterlite Tech for Rs 3,500 cr defence network

Sterlite Tech, India’s biggest fiber cable maker, said it won a Rs 3500-crore order to design, build and manage a communications network for the Indian Navy.

The advance purchase order requires Sterlite Tech to design, build and manage the communications network for over a decade.

The project includes the creation of a high-capacity IP-MPLS (Internet Protocol – Multi Protocol Label Switching) network. Once completed, it will link multiple Indian naval sites and India-administered islands.

“This is the first time that an integrated naval communications network at such a scale is being built in India,” Sterlite said, adding that the network will give the Indian Navy digital “defence supremacy at par with the best naval forces globally”.

The Navy’s communications network has been envisioned as a smarter network infrastructure with enhanced throughput, high-quality secure services and ease of network management, it added.

It was in 2011 that the government first awarded an optical fiber-based defense project to BSNL, the budget for which is over Rs 13,300 cr.

Three months ago, Himachal Futuristic Communications said it had received an order from BSNL to supply equipment for the pan-India defence network, indicating that the project is still being rolled out.

The fiber-based connectivity is supposed to replace the legacy wireless connectivity.

“Our recent experience of creating an intrusion-proof communication network for the Indian Army in Jammu & Kashmir will be leveraged for the Navy’s communications network,” said Anand Agarwal, CEO, Sterlite Tech.

“As master systems integrator, we will lead the planning and designing of a converged MPLS infrastructure on a two-layered centrally-managed IP backbone,” said Telecom Products & Services head KS Rao.

“This will provide a secure and reliable digital highway to the Indian Navy for administrative and defence operations,” he added.