How Indian Navy stacks up after China delivers most advanced warship to Pakistan

China delivered its largest and most advanced warship to Pakistan on Monday. The Type 054A/P frigate, named PNS Tughril, has been designed ...

China delivered its largest and most advanced warship to Pakistan on Monday. The Type 054A/P frigate, named PNS Tughril, has been designed and built by China State Shipbuilding Corporation Limited (CSSC).

On receiving the ship, Pakistan’s ambassador to China, Moin Ul-Haq, said in a navy news release that the frigate will strengthen the service’s ability to respond to maritime challenges, ensure seaward defence, and maintain peace, stability and the regional balance of power.

Here’s everything you want to know about the ship and how it stacks up against India’s naval power.

Type 054A/P frigate

The ship is technologically advanced and is equipped with a new combat management system developed by the CSSC.

It also has advanced sensors and weapons; according to a report, the frigate is equipped with the SR2410C long-range and Type 517/SUR17B air-surveillance radars.

It also carries the HQ-16 medium-range air defence missiles, which has a range of up to 50 km. The Type 054A also possesses stealth features, including a sloped hull design, radar absorbent materials, and a clean profile.

The ship also has a vertical launching system, which means it can be armed with anti-aircraft missiles, ship and land-attack cruise missiles and anti-submarine missiles.

Yin Zhuo, a retired rear admiral from the PLA Navy, told Chinese state-run newspaper People’s Daily Online that the new frigate had a displacement of more than 4,000 tonnes.

Pakistan-China friendship

With this commission, Pakistan became the ship's first foreign customer.

The delivery of the vessel is also an indication of the growing friendship between China and Pakistan. In a statement, the shipbuilding company said: "The ship will further enhance the all-weather strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries."

Same sentiments were echoed by Pakistani ambassador to China Moin Ul-Haq, who said that "the commissioning of the PNS Tughril ushers in a new chapter in Pakistan-China friendship that has matured through the test of time and remained steadfast in all domains".

In the recent times, Beijing has emerged as the biggest weapons supplier for the Pakistani military. In addition to the ship, China has also partnered with the Pakistan Air Force to build JF-17 Thunder fighter aircraft.

In addition to this, Islamabad will also be getting eight Hangor-class submarines in this year.

Message to India

Experts note that the ship’s delivery to Pakistan is China’s way of stepping up its naval presence in India's backyard — the Indian Ocean.

Tom Waldwyn, a naval expert at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, noted in a report that the Indian Navy maintains a significant numbers and capability advantage over Pakistan.

According to Global Fire Index, a website that analyses the strength of the armies of countries around the world, India has 285 naval warships while Pakistan has only 100 ships.

Also, while India has 17 submarines (16 diesel-powered and 1 nuclear-powered), Pakistan has only nine diesel-powered submarines. Also, when it comes to frigates, India tops Pakistan.

However, with China it is a whole different ball game. In terms of number of ships — surface vessels and submarines — China has the largest navy in the world, according to the US Department of Defense.

At the end of 2020, the size of China's navy was approximately 360. China also possesses more than 70 submarines, including seven nuclear ballistic missile submarines (SSBN), 12 nuclear attack submarines (SSN), and more than 50 diesel attack submarines.

Hence, the Indian Navy should stand prepared in the face of these two foes — China and Pakistan.

With inputs from agencies

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How Indian Navy stacks up after China delivers most advanced warship to Pakistan
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