Indian Navy’s oldest aircraft carrier INS Viraat is going to retire at a solemn ceremony in Mumbai today after thirty years of service.
In the year 1987, India brought INS Viraat for Rs 6.5 crore. Prior to this INS Viraat served the British Royal Navy from 1959 to 1984.
Earlier, INS Viraat was known as HMS Hermes, before commissioned into Indian Navy. It was built in 1943, during the Second World War.
Currently, Indian Navy has only one serving aircraft carrier namely INS Vikramaditya and the second one, named Vikrant, which is under construction at Cochin Shipyard Ltd.
Indian navy’s flagship aircraft carrier sailed for the last time from Mumbai to Kochi in July 2016, later it was brought back to Mumbai in October last year.
INS Viraat, which is also known as Grand Old Lady played a crucial role in the Sri Lankan Peace Keeping operations in 1989 and also showcased its brilliance in the Operation Parakram after the 2001- 2002 parliament attack.
Andhra Pradesh Government is planning to convert INS Viraat into hotel-cum-museum after its retirement.