On Board INS Vikramaditya: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today visited India's largest warship, aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, marking his first outing to a military facility after assuming office last month.
While on the ship, that is sailing off the Goa coast in the Arabian Sea, he also sat in the cockpit of a MiG-29 K fighter jet and interacted with the crew on board. (Watch video here)
Procured from Russia, INS Vikramaditya is one of the newest acquisitions of the Indian Navy and the most powerful symbol of its military reach. It was commissioned last November by then Defence Minister AK Antony at Russia's Sevmash shipyard.
The Prime Minister, who is travelling outside Delhi for the first time since taking oath on May 26, landed at INS Hansa, the naval air station in Goa, around 10 am and was received by Navy Chief Admiral RK Dhowan. After a ceremonial guard of honour, he flew in a chopper to the 44,500-tonne aircraft carrier.
During his "day at sea" with the Western Naval Command fleet, the PM will witness air power demonstration by various naval aircraft, including MiG 29K, Sea Harriers, P-8I long-range maritime patrol and anti-submarine warfare aircraft, TU 142M, IL 38 SD, Dorniers, Kamov and Sea King helicopters.
He will also watch high-speed manoeuvres by the western fleet ships, including aircraft carrier INS Viraat, Delhi-class destroyers and Talwar-class frigates.
The PM will also witness take-off and arrestor wire landing operations and high-speed low-level operations of the MiG 29K integral fighters on board the flight deck of INS Vikramaditya.
INS Vikramaditya has an overall length of 284 metres and a beam of 60 metres, stretching as much as three football fields put together. Standing about 20 storeys tall from keel to the highest point, the vessel has 22 decks. It has over 1,600 personnel on board.
The warship has the ability to carry 30 aircraft, including an assortment of MiG 29K/Sea Harrier, Kamov 31, Kamov 28, Sea King, and Dhruv and Chetak helicopters.