Indigenous aircraft carrier Vikrant
Indigenous aircraft carrier Vikrant

Modi to commission India's first indigenous aircraft carrier as INS Vikrant

New Delhi, August 30, 2022

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will commission India's first indigenously designed and built aircraft carrier as INS Vikrant at the Cochin Shipyard Limited in Kochi, Kerala on September 2.

He will reach Cochin on September 1 and visit Sri Adi Shankara Janma Bhoomi Kshetram, the birthplace of Adi Shankaracharya, at Kalady village near Cochin Airport.

After the function at Cochin Shipyard the next morning, he will fly to Mangaluru in Karnataka, where he will inaugurate and lay the foundation stones of development projects worth around Rs 3,800 crore.

A press release from the Prime Minister's Office noted that Modi had been a strong proponent of "Aatmanirbharta" (self-reliance), especially in strategic sectors and the commissioning of INS Vikrant would mark a significant step in this direction.

The ship has been designed by Indian Navy's in-house Warship Design Bureau (WDB) and built by Cochin Shipyard Limited, a public sector shipyard under the Ministry of Ports, Shipping & Waterways.

Vikrant has state-of-the-art automation features and is the largest ship ever built in the maritime history of India.

The ship is named after her illustrious predecessor, India’s first aircraft carrier which had played a vital role in the 1971 war. It has a large number of indigenous equipment and machinery, involving major industrial houses in the country as well as over 100 MSMEs. With the commissioning of Vikrant, India will have two operational aircraft carriers, which will bolster the maritime security of the nation, the release said.

During the event, the Prime Minister will also unveil the new Naval Ensign (Nishaan), doing away with the colonial past and befitting the rich Indian maritime heritage.

In Mangaluru, he will inaugurate and lay the foundation stones of mechanization and industrialisation projects worth around Rs 3,800 crores.

They include a Rs 280 crore project for mechanisation of Berth No. 14, for handling containers and other cargo, undertaken by the New Mangalore Port Authority. The mechanized terminal will increase efficiency and reduce turnaround time, pre-berthing delay and dwell time in the port by around 35%, thus giving a boost to the business environment. Phase I of the project has been successfully completed, thereby adding over 4.2 MTPA to the handling capacity, which would further increase to over 6 MTPA by 2025.

Modi will lay the foundation stone of five projects worth around Rs 1,000 crore undertaken by the port. The integrated LPG and Bulk Liquid POL Facility, equipped with state-of-the-art cryogenic LPG storage tank terminal, will be capable of unloading full load VLGCs (very large gas carriers) of 45,000 tonnes in a highly efficient manner.

The facility will bolster Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana in the region while reinforcing the port’s status as one of the top LPG importing ports in the country, the release said.

He will lay the foundation stone of projects for construction of storage tanks and edible oil refinery and construction of bitumen & edible oil storage and allied facilities. These projects will improve the turnaround time of bitumen and edible oil vessels and reduce the overall freight cost for trade.

The Prime Minister will also lay the foundation stone for development of Fishing Harbour at Kulai, which will facilitate safe handling of fish catch and enable better prices in the global market. This work will be undertaken under the umbrella of the Sagarmala Programme, and will result in significant socio-economic benefits for the fishermen community, it said.

He will also inaugurate two projects undertaken by Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited -- BS VI Upgradation Project and Sea Water Desalination Plant. The BS VI Upgradation Project, worth around Rs 1,830 crores, will facilitate production of ultra-pure environment friendly BS-VI grade fuel (with sulphur content less than 10 PPM). The Sea Water Desalination Plant, set up at a cost of around Rs. 680 crores, will help reduce dependency on fresh water and ensure regular supply of hydrocarbons and petrochemicals throughout the year. Having a capacity of 30 million litres per day (MLD), the plant converts seawater into water required for the refinery processes, the release added.


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