Over a month after the ship-breaker in Alang winched INS Viraat closer to the shore for dismantling, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) had last month formally turned down the proposal to convert the decommissioned aircraft carrier into a museum.
In a three-page letter to Envitech Marine Consultants Pvt. Ltd, which has proposed to turn the vessel into a museum, the ministry wrote on November 27 that taking “factual as well as policy aspects inter alia related to safety and material state of the vessel (whose keel was laid in pre-Independence era) into consideration, the request of the petitioner for grant of NOC (no objection certificate) to convert the status of ex-Viraat cannot be acceded to”.
While many may think that this would be the end of the road for the Viraat—once the Navy’s flagship that was decommissioned in 2017 after 30 years of service—EMCPL from Navi Mumbai is preparing to move Supreme Court.
“We will be moving Supreme Court in a day or two. This is not over,” said Rupali Sharma, Director of Envitech Marine Consultants.