INS Vikrant, also known as Indigenous Aircraft Carrier 1 (IAC-1), sailed out on its maiden sea trail on the coasts of Kochi on Wednesday, 4 August.
Hours after, Prime Minister Narendra Modi too congratulated the Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard for the "maiden sea sortie" by INS Vikrant. The prime minister also said that it is a wonderful example of Make in India.
A tweet from the Indian Navy hailed it as a “proud and historical moment for India” adding that when it commissions, India will be part of an elite group of countries who manufacture and operate their own aircraft carriers.
Once commissioned, India will join the ranks of the US, UK, Russia, France, and China in the construction of aircraft carriers.
The navy also dubbed it as the “largest and most complex warship ever to be designed and built in India.” The length of the ship is 262 m, while its beam is 62 m and has a depth of 25.6 m. It was constructed by the Cochin Shipyard Limited for the Indian Navy. The project cost nearly Rs 23,000 crore.
Speaking to Twitter, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh called the carrier’s maiden trail as a “true testimony to our unwavering commitment to Atmanirbharta in Defence. Realisation of this historic milestone, regardless of COVID, shows true dedication & commitment of all stakeholders. A proud moment for India.”
According to an Indian Express report, the IAC-1 will operate 24 Russian built MIG-29K fighter aircrafts, Kamov-31 Air Early Warning Helicopters, MH-60R multi-role helicopter and advanced light helicopters.
Work on the ship's design began in 1999, and the keel was laid in February 2009. The carrier was floated out of its dry dock on 29 December 2011 and was launched on 12 August 2013. Basic trials were completed in December 2020.
(With inputs from IANS, The Indian Express)
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