IAC Vikrant commissioned
- India enters the top league in state-of-the-art production
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi does the honours
By Chaitali Bag , Aboard IAC Vikrant
Kochy, India. 02 September 2022. It is a historic moment for India and the day a red letter one. Indian Navy’s first indigenous aircraft carrier IAC Vikrant was just commissioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Cochin Shipyard Limited in the presence of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Governor Arif Mohammad Khan, CM Pinarayi Vijayan and other dignitaries.
“INS Vikrant is the pride of every Indian. If challenges are large, obstacles are many, then the answer is INS Vikrant. From the seashores of Kerala, every Indian is becoming a witness today to the sunrise of a new future. This ceremony on INS Vikrant is a call for the strengthening morale of India on a global horizon,”stated the Prime Minister with elan.
The Prime Minister also unveiled the new Naval Ensign (Nishaan), doing away with the colonial past. The new insignia represents the rich Indian maritime heritage, from the dynasties of the past till the present not to forget Shivaji Maharaj’s Maratha Navy which is our maritime legacy. He exhorted, “Till now the identity of slavery remained on the flag of Indian Navy. But from today onwards, inspired by Chhatrapati Shivaji, the new Navy flag will fly in the sea and in the sky.”
A naval Guard of Honour presented the salute to the PM as he arrived for the Commissioning ceremony. The name ‘Vikrant’ (which means courageous) brought back memories of pride to all the people present and will sure be an envy to the not-so-friendly neighbours Indian Navy is tasked protect the national maritime borders from.
PM also stated that as INS Vikrant descends to protect our maritime zone, many women soldiers of the Navy will also be stationed there and with the immense power of the ocean, boundless female power, it will become the identity of New India. “Now the Indian Navy has decided to open all its branches for women. The restrictions that were there are now being removed. Just like there are no boundaries for waves, there will be no restrictions for the daughters of India,” he said.
The Defence Minister of India Rajnath Singh while speaking at the ocassion said, ” Indian Navy is always ready as the first responder to national and international level of crises. With the commissioning of INS Vikrant, the capability of the Indian Navy will be further strengthened.” He also added that this will be a wholesome story of the marching ahead in making India Atmanirbhar Bharat . INS Vikrant is not just a warship. It is a testament to the hard work, talent, influence and commitment of the 21st century India.
India has changed so much since 1961 when the first INS Vikrant became a part of its naval inventory. Self reliance is so strong and indigenous capacities so technically advanced that India can bring together build a ship that is a thousand feet long, carries 1700 crew, endures an 8000 mile run, generates 88 MW power, and holds 30 fighter planes. INS Vikrant is not only the frontline of national maritime security but also the symbol of our scientific and technological prowess. India needs more such floating fortresses.
It was a morning of hustle-bustle and excitement with expectancy in the air. Cochin Shipyard decked like a bride was all set to welcome the guests for the momentus ocassion. IAC Vikrant the largest and most complex warship ever built in the maritime history of India, was all set to be commissioned. As a part of the media entourage I soaked in the environment and the moment , realising that I was a part of history in the making both geopolitical and military. I feel humbled.