SHAH ALAM: KD Handalan, pennant number 3511 and KD Perkasa, 3512, celebrated their 44th birthday on July 17. Both ships were commissioned on July 17, 1979, a year after they were launched at the Karlskrona Varvet Shipyard in Sweden.
Handalan is of course the lead ship of the four-ship class which include KD Pendekar, 3513 and KD Gempita, 3514. Both Pendekar and Gempita will be 44 years old this August 21 as they were commissioned on that date in 1979.
The ships were originally designated as the Second FAC (Missile) Squadron before they were redesignated as 1st FAC Squadron under the Patrol Flotilla. This was done after the class’s MM40 Exocet SSMs were retired, in mid 2000s.
As reported previously, Perkasa was recently delivered to the RMN after undergoing the OP Plus programme where she had her engines, generators and hull replaced. She has not received the locally developed CMS as with Gempita and Pendekar.
Perkasa is currently in Langkawi for an exercise – SeaEX Thamal 67/23 – with the Royal Thai Navy (RTN) together with KD Terengganu, pennant 174. Perkasa was involved in another exercise with the RTN – Exercise ThaLay Laut 24/23 at the Kuantan naval base together with KD Gagah Samudera.
Both Perkasa and Terengganu are based at Kuantan naval base which is the headquarters of the Regional Naval Command One or Markas Wilayah Laut 1 (Mawilla 1).
It is interesting to note Mawilla 1 did not published any pictures of Perkasa while she was taking part in ThaLay Laut but has published her picture taking part in SeaEx Thamal which is being hosted by the Regional Naval Command Three or Mawilla 3 which located in Langkawi.
— Malaysian Defence