March 27, 2023

INS Vikrant during sea trials on September 06, 2021; image credit: Wikimedia


It took 13 years and INR23,000 crore to indigenously develop INS Vikrant. Even before its commissioning, preparations for building another indigenous aircraft carrier, INS Vishal, at a cost of INR50,000 crore have already started. While there are voices in support of the move and against it, military needs of a country can’t always be explained using economic logic.

“Courageous”. When one saw INS Vikrant doing complex manoeuvres in the high seas as part of a trial earlier this year, that was perhaps the only adjective – quite like the English translation of its Sanskrit name – that could sum up India’s first indigenously developed aircraft carrier. It took India 13 years and INR23,000 crore to make this “courage” a reality. The 44,000 tonne aircraft carrier, which can operate MiG-29K fighter jets,

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