INS Viraat served the Indian Navy for 30 years and was decommisssioned in 2017. The vessel being one of the oldest serving warships in the world was set sail on Indian waters for the last time as it reaches Gujarat on 21st September to be converted into scrap.
Veteran Navy vessel INS Viraat set sail after 30 Years for the final time. INS Viraat, which was the Indian Navy’s decommissioned aircraft carrier was let into waters on Sunday. The ship sailed from Mumbai to Alang, Gujarat where the ship shall be dismantled and sold as mere scrap. The aircraft carrier served the Indian Navy for 30 years after being procured from UK in 1987.
The aircraft carrier was decommissioned in March 2017. INS Viraat previously had served the United Kingdom’s Royal Navy as HMS Hermes for 27 years. After being inducted in India in 1987, it was renamed to INS Viraat. The aircraft carrier was decommissioned in 2017. The ship in total served for 57 years making it one of the oldest serving warships.
The moment was a reminiscent and bittersweet one for several Indian Navy Veterans. They painfully watched the ship sail from the Mumbai port. It reminded them of some of the best years of their lives. As Viraat set sail on its final journey, A Navy helicopter hovered over the vessel. The helicopter provided many with the magnificent and stunning shots of the Viraat’s final journey.
“#Mumbai bids adieu to #Viraat as she leaves harbour one final time on her way to Alang, Gujarat. The flagship of @indiannavy served with distinction for three decades after her service in @RoyalNavy as #HMSHermes for over two decades.” tweeted PRO Defence Mumbai.
There were ventures to convert INS Viraat into a museum or a restaurant. But all of the efforts went in vain due to several reasons.
Alang-based Shree Ram group purchased the vessel for a staggering Rs 38.54 crore at an auction. “Viraat will be dismantled at the Alang ship breaking yard. The vessel will likely reach Alang by September 21 if weather conditions remainfavourable,”expressed the company’s chairman Mukesh Patel.
The vessel was part of major operations under the Indian Navy. Some of them being Operation Jupiter, Operation Parakram and Operation Vijay. (Source: IndiaToday)