India now joins the group of Naval powers that have the capability to indigenously build aircraft carriers.

India’s first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier, INS Vikrant

India’s first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant began its first sea trials off the coast of Kochi on Wednesday. Embarking the proud and historic moment for India, the largest and the most complex warship build in the country, INS Vikrant has marked a big jump forward for India’s defence industry and combat ability of the Indian Navy.

With the successful start of the trials of INS Vikrant, India has now joined the group of selected country’s that have the capability to indigenously design, manufacture and integrate a state-of-the-art aircraft carrier.

The Name – INS Vikrant

This Indigenously built Aircraft Carrier will carry the name of its predecessor, INS Vikrant that played a significant role in the 1971 war which saw the birth of Bangladesh and therefore is often treated as a symbol of India’s victory over Pakistan in the Bangladesh Liberation War. Interestingly, this Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) has set off on its maiden sea trials, exactly 50 years after its antecedent played a major role in the victory of the 1971 war.

It is important to note that INS Vikrant was Indian Navy’s first aircraft and was operated by the Navy from 1961 to 1997. The warship got decommissioned in 1997 after more than 35 years of its glorious service. The reincarnated INS Vikrant is likely to be inducted into the Indian Navy in less than a year making India join the club of the US, the UK, Russia, France and China who have the capability to indigenously build aircraft carriers.

Indigenous construction of INS Vikrant

With India’s quest to become AtmaNirbhar and self-reliant, INS Vikrant with more than 76 percent indigenous content is the result of the efforts of Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard Limited (a Public Sector Shipyard under Ministry of Shipping) to indigenously design and build an aircraft carrier.

Apart from this, the construction and manufacturing of INS Vikrant has opened India’s way towards successfully building indigenous design and construction capabilities.

INS Vikrant: The Biggest Warship

INS Vikrant (IAC-1) is the biggest warship made indigenously with an overall length of 262 metres, a width of 63 metres and 59 metres high including the superstructure. Apart from being the biggest warship, this slayer of enemies is capable of carrying 30 assorted aircraft including combat jets and helicopters. Propelled by four gas turbines, it can attain a top speed of 30 knots (about 55 kmph). The vessel will have a complement of 1,500 personnel.

The warship, with a displacement of about 37,500 tonnes, will operate MiG-29K fighter jets, Kamov-31 helicopters, MH-60R multi-role helicopters and the indigenous advanced light helicopters.


By Mahima Joshi

Mahima Joshi is a writer at The Wonk. She is a postgraduate in Journalism, who is just curious about everything that is happening around. She is an enthusiastic reader especially concerning gender dynamics in mythological stories.

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