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Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicates INS Vikramaditya to the nation

India TV News Desk 14 Jun 2014, 14:08:03 IST
India TV News Desk
New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday dedicated INS Vikramaditya, the largest and most powerful aircraft carrier inducted into the Indian Navy, to the nation, terming it an "important day for our nation".

A tweet from the Prime Minister's Office quoted Modi as saying: "We need to give immense importance to latest technology. This will help the nation."

He also emphasised that India must be "self-sufficient" and manufacturing the defence equipment.

"Why should we import defence equipment? We must be self-sufficient. Why can't we send our defence equipment to other nations," Modi tweeted.

The Prime Minister, who spent a few hours on board the 44,500-tonne warship, assured the Defence personnel about the implementation of the 'One Rank One Pension' scheme.

He also congratulated the officers on the launch of India's largest warship aircraft carrier.

while on board INS Vikramaditya, Modi also hopped into the cockpit of a MiG-29 K fighter jet.

During his stay on the ship, acquired from Russia for over Rs 15,000 crore, Modi witnessed 'air power demonstration' by various naval aircraft, including MiG 29K, Sea Harriers, P 8I Long Range Maritime Patrol Anti-Submarine Warfare aircraft, TU 142M and IL-38SD maritime surveillance planes along with Kamov and Sea King helicopters.

The deal for the aircraft carrier was signed during the previous NDA regime in 2004 and the ship has been dedicated to the nation after a gap of ten years. The vessel was inducted in the Indian Navy on November 16, 2013.

The 44,500-tonne INS Vikramaditya, procured from Russia, is one of the newest acquisitions of the Indian Navy and the most powerful symbol of its military reach.

It was commissioned by then defence minister A.K. Antony last November at Russia's Sevmash shipyard.