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Aircraft carrier Vikramaditya fully operational: Navy Chief

Sources said the navy has proposed that the commissioning ceremony for the warships be presided over by a senior minister, as has been the norm.

Written by Manu Pubby | New Delhi | Published: May 31, 2014 1:56 am
Apart from Vikramaditya (above), two modern ships are to be inducted soon, Dhowan said. Apart from Vikramaditya (above), two modern ships are to be inducted soon, Dhowan said.

Signalling that INS Vikramaditya is battle ready months after its arrival from Russia, Navy Chief Admiral Robin Dhowan has said that the aircraft carrier is fully operational with an adequate number of pilots now qualified to operate from the floating airfield.

Speaking with The Indian Express, Dhowan shared that the Indian crew has now been fully trained and the carrier is ready to conduct operations. “The ship is now operationally deployed and our pilots have been conducting regular flying operations. An adequate number of pilots have been trained,” he said, adding that the training was initially carried out by qualified flight instructors from Russia.

The Navy Chief, who took over charge in April after weeks of uncertainty due to the sudden resignation of Admiral D K Joshi after a spate of accidents, expressed satisfaction at the smooth sail of the aircraft carrier from Russia to India and said that the Navy was satisfied with the warship.

While he did not comment on when the Vikramaditya would be ‘dedicated to the nation’, Dhowan said that two major inductions are planned to be carried out in the coming weeks — the first P 28 anti-submarine corvette built by Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers to be commissioned at Vizag and the first to the Kolkata class stealth destroyers that is to be commissioned in Mumbai shortly.

Sources said the navy has proposed that the commissioning ceremony for the warships be presided over by a senior minister, as has been the norm. A visit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to India’s largest warship, the Vikramaditya, is also in the offing and could be his first visit to a major military asset, besides a tour of the Siachen glacier.

Admiral Dhowan has also overseen flying operations on the aircraft carrier in May during a visit to the Western shores. The Vikramaditya participated in its first training exercise off the Goa coast in the first week of May along with ships of the western fleet.

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    balakrishnan
    Jun 6, 2014 at 7:45 am
    What about the air defense system?
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    1. Emily Mainzer
      Sep 3, 2014 at 5:31 am
      India's INS vikramaditya is really a powerful gem for Indian Navy, was really felt happy when it was included into the navy in Jan'14. Indians must be proud of INS Vikramaditya which is equipped with 234 new hull sections constructed using 2,500t of steel. It has an overall length of 284m, a maximum beam of 60m, height of about 60m and a displacement of 44,500t. Go Indian Navy Go ... I hope Indian Navy will get more these kind of Aircraft carriers in coming Future ....
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        prem
        May 31, 2014 at 4:57 pm
        What a joke the Indian Navy is, this carrier has cost the IN nearly 3$ Billion dollars with over 1000 navy personals on the carrier it dose not have a air defense system, I have said don't trust the navy give them AK47 and fishing boats.prem
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          npk
          Jun 1, 2014 at 6:44 am
          this is what i say...no matter who ever rules indians...they seem to be easily get fooled...did any one though whether it has all weapons integrated...it can't escape the agasto submarines torpedo that PAK has...it is a dependent ship till 2016/17..it doesn't have quick response weapon defense system. no missiles been incorporated to it...it is a mobile take-off and landing desk for MiG-29...
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