Watch: Rajnath Singh Fires Machine Gun From Navy's Aircraft Carrier

Rajnath Singh INS Vikramaditya Visit: In a protective military headgear and dark goggles, Rajnath Singh grabs hold of the machine gun with both his hands and calmly fires multiple rounds at the open sea

Watch: Rajnath Singh Fires Machine Gun From Navy's Aircraft Carrier

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh seen firing from a machine gun on aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya

New Delhi:

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, who spent a day onboard the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, was seen on video firing a big calibre medium machine gun from the ship's deck. He was helped by two Indian Navy sailors.

In a protective military headgear and dark goggles, Mr Singh grabs hold of the machine gun with both his hands and calmly fires multiple rounds at the open sea.

The spent bullet casings fly out from the ammunition belt as the Defence Minister keeps his finger firmly on the trigger.

After completing the shooting practice, Mr Singh speaks with the sailors.

Mr Singh had earlier tweeted about his visit to the aircraft carrier, where he met with the Indian Naval Air Squadron 303, known as the "Black Panthers".

He had also commented on the Indian Navy's "second strike capability", which is the assured capability of an armed force to respond to a nuclear attack with its own nuclear weapons. Mr Singh underlined the importance of the Navy's "most significant" second strike capability.

"I am aware that after the Pulwama attack, when the country responded effectively through strikes on terror camps in Balakot, the Western Fleet was immediately deployed in a strong posture in the northern Arabian Sea," the Defence Minister was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

He said the deployment of the Navy's Western Fleet during the Balakot air strike "degraded the ability of our adversary" and "ensured they did not attempt any misadventure at sea".

Mr Singh spoke about the significance of the Navy in ensuring energy security and economic growth of the country, adding that 90 per cent of India's international trade by volume is carried by sea.

"As we move towards our goal of a $5 trillion economy, the volume of maritime trade will only grow in the times to come. Thus, I firmly believe that the role of the Indian Navy in general and the Western Fleet in particular is also critical in ensuring the energy security and economic growth of the country," he added.

During his overnight stay on INS Vikramaditya, Mr Singh saw several military exercises involving submarines and frigates. He said he will write to the family members of each personnel serving on the aircraft carrier.

(With Inputs From PTI)

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