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By Behindwoods News Bureau | Dec 11, 2018 10:55 AM
India to get its first underwater museum in Puducherry

In a major boost for tourism, India is set to get its first underwater museum off the Puducherry coast. According to a Times of India report, INS Cuddalore, a minesweeper decommissioned in March after it travelled 30,000 nautical miles in 30 years, will be turned into a museum.

The Indian Navy, along with the Puducherry Government, the National Institute of Ocean Technology, National Centre for Coastal Research (two Chennai based national laboratories) and PondyCan, a NGO which works to preserve and enhance the natural, social, cultural and spiritual environment, are planning to turn the minesweeper into an underwater museum!

This project is the first-of-its-kind in India, and the research and preparations to develop the museum about 7 km from the coast of Puducherry, have already commenced.

“We studied the water quality and benthic organisms in a 500m radius to find the impact the ship may have. We also chose the location as the seabed is sandy and water becomes calm beyond a certain depth,” MV Ramanamurthy, the Director of NCCR told Times of India.

Water buoys and 19-metre tall masts of the ship will be deployed so that they are visible over the sea surface and tourists will be able to go on boat rides around it.

The ship will first be sunk at the decided location, and the authorities hope that algae and barnacles grow onto its surface. Some doors of the 60-metre-long and 12-metre-wide vessel will be taken off so scuba divers can swim in and out of it while on guided and unguided tours.