India: PM Modi commissions INS Vikrant, country's first indigenous aircraft carrier

It has two operational aircraft carriers, which will bolster its maritime security


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Published: Fri 2 Sep 2022, 10:03 AM

On Friday morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi commissioned the first indigenous aircraft carrier, INS Vikrant, in a ceremony at Cochin Shipyard Limited in Kochi.

Ahead of the commissioning, PM Modi received the Guard of Honour at the Shipyard as he arrived for the commissioning ceremony.

Designed by the Indian Navy's in-house Warship Design Bureau (WDB), and built by Cochin Shipyard Limited, a public sector shipyard under the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, Vikrant has been built with state-of-the-art automation features, and is the largest ship ever built in the maritime history of India.

The Indigenous Aircraft Carrier is named after her illustrious predecessor — India's first aircraft carrier — which had played a vital role in the 1971 war.

As per the Indian Navy, the 262-metre-long carrier has a full displacement of nearly 45,000 tonnes, which is much larger and more advanced than her predecessor.

When asked about its specifications, Vice Admiral Hampiholi explained:

"Vikrant carries a mix of about 30 aircraft. It could fly the MiG 29k fighter aircraft in anti-air, anti-surface and land attack roles. It will be able to operate the Kamov 31 which is an early air warning helicopter, the recently inducted but yet-to-be commissioned MH-60R which is a multi-role helicopter as also our very indigenous ALH."

With Vikrant, India has joined a select group of nations having the niche capability to indigenously design and build an aircraft carrier. It consists of 14 decks, with 2,300 compartments that can carry around 1,500 sea warriors, and, to cater to the food requirements, around 10,000 chapatis or rotis are made in the ship's kitchen (galley).

The ship is powered by four gas turbines totalling 88MW power, and has a maximum speed of 28 knots. Built at an overall cost of around Rs200 billion, the project has progressed in three phases of the contract between MoD and CSL — which concluded in May 2007, December 2014 and October 2019 respectively.

The ship's keel was laid in Feb 2009, followed by its launch in August 2013.

With an overall indigenous content of 76 per cent, this vessel is a perfect example of the nation's quest for "Aatma Nirbhar Bharat".

Major industrial houses in the country such as BEL, BHEL, GRSE, Keltron, Kirloskar, Larsen & Toubro, and Wartsila India, as well as over 100 MSMEs were involved in this vessel's production.The indigenisation efforts have also led to the development of ancillary industries, apart from the generation of employment opportunities and bolstering plough back effect on the economy, both locally as well as pan-India.


Vikrant has been built with a high degree of automation for machinery operation, ship navigation and survivability, and has been designed to accommodate an assortment of fixed-wing and rotary aircraft.

Several design iterations, including the use of 3D Virtual Reality models and advanced engineering software, were used by the Directorate of Naval Design in shaping the design of the carrier.

With the commissioning of the INS Vikrant, India now has two operational aircraft carriers, which will bolster its maritime security.

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