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INS Vikrant, India’s First Indigenous Aircraft Carrier

Anokhi DIY Anokhi Today Breaking News & Sports World Aug 20, 2013

Indians all over the world celebrated their nation’s 67th Independence Day recently and to go along with the proud moment, the country officially launched its own first indigenously built aircraft carrier.

The INS Vikrant, which means, “bold” and “courageous” in Hindi, is a $ 5 billion dollar project.

The launch of this aircraft carrier is a landmark moment for Indians both in the country and living worldwide as the glorious vessel reflects the country’s power and also keeps in check China’s rising influence.
INS Vikrant / Reuters

While the aircraft carrier will come into full service in 2018, India is the fifth country that has built and designed its own carrier ahead of China and now joins an elite club that includes Britain, United States, France, and Russia.

This colossal and breathtaking warship is said to be the largest warship in the country and weighs 37,000-ton and is 260 meters long and 60 meters wide, with a flight deck twice the size of a football field. The ship will also be able to hit targets that are as far as 1,600 kilometers and can speed as fast as 28 knots.

The ship will be fitted with weaponry and machinery and will undergo tests in the next four years and can carry 36 planes and will go for extensive trials in 2016. In 2018, the ship will be officially inducted in the navy! In lieu of India’s booming economy, Britain will be stopping its £280million-a-year aid programme to India. 

India's launch also comes at a time when Japan had recently launched their new ship capable of carrying 14 helicopters at once, however, Japanese officials have insisted that the aircraft carrier can carry planes and is an aircraft carrier not used to launch jets.
 
The flight deck of INS Vikrant has the capacity to hold 19 aircrafts while 17 fighters can remain in the ship’s amazing hanger. Fighter aircraft Mig-29K, Light Combat Aircraft and Kamov-31 helicopters will deploy on board the carrier which will also carry an array of other weapon systems.

The time interval between the two ships can be as low as two to three minutes according to Xinhua Net. The INS Vikrant was built in Cochin, Kerala and has the power to lit up the entire city in which it was built.

Defence Minister A K Antony (second right), his wife Elizabeth Antony, Union Minister for Shipping G K Vasan (right) and Chief for Naval Staff, Admiral D K Joshi, during the launch.

Defense Minister A. K. Anthony stood in front of the grey hull of the ship during the ceremony and said, “It's a remarkable milestone. It marks just a first step in a long journey but at the same time an important one."
 
Vice Admiral Nair, Controller Warship and Acquisition told Telegraph, “'We have built 6,000 to 7,000 tonnage capacity ships so far. This is 37,500 tonnes.”

He also said that they had encountered lots of issues during the construction of Phase I but the issues are being resolved before Phase II begins.

 “'Most of the equipment has gone on board while the weapons have to be inducted. It has got ski jump from where aircraft will take off.” According to Commodore K. Subramaniam, the next phase of the ship will be the construction of electric ventilation, electric cables, and the construction of 2,300 compartments. The diesel generators and powerful gas turbines have already been installed! 
INS Vikrant/ Reuters 

Fu Xiaoqiang, an expert on South Asian studies at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations told NZweek, “The unveiling of its first home-built aircraft carrier is significant. It will boost India’s military power and increase its influence over the Indian Ocean.”

In addition, Fu has also remarked that the launch of this aircraft also demonstrate India’s aircraft manufacturing industry and will definitely boost the national defense industry! 

Tell us what you think of the new vessel and what the launch of the power house means to you?

Feature Image: AP
Images & Source: ndtv.com, news.xinhuanet.com, nzweek.co

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