The Aircraft Carriers of Indian Navy

The Aircraft Carriers of Indian Navy


  • Recently, the Indian Navy has commissioned India’s first indigenously designed and manufactured aircraft carrier which has placed Indian as one among the Naval Super Powers of the world
  • With it, India also joins the elite group of nations – the US, Russia, France, the UK and China 


  • INS Vikrant, with pennant number R11, was the first-ever aircraft carrier that was operated by the Indian Navy.
  • The ship was officially laid down in 1943, and was being built for the Royal Navy as HMS (Her Majesty’s Ship) Hercules when the constitution was put on hold after World War II ended.
  • Like many other ships at the time, the under-construction HMS Hercules was put up for sale by the United Kingdom, and was purchased by India in 1957. The construction work was completed and the ship was commissioned in the Indian Navy as INS Vikrant in 1961.
  • R11 saw significant action during the 1971 war with Pakistan when it led the Naval blockade of East Pakistan. The ship was decommissioned in 1997 after 36 years of service. Over the next 15 years, it was preserved as a museum ship before being finally sold to be dismantled.


  • The ship was laid down as HMS Hercules for the British Royal Navy during World War II, but was put on hold when the war ended.
  • India purchased the incomplete carrier in 1957, and construction was completed in 1961.
  • Vikrant was commissioned as the first aircraft carrier of the Indian Navy


  • The ship was completed and commissioned in 1959 as the Royal Navy’s HMS Hermes, and decommissioned in 1984. It was sold to India in 1987.
  • In February 2015, the Navy stated that Viraat would be decommissioned the following year.
  • The last British-built ship serving with the Indian Navy, it was the oldest aircraft carrier in service in the world.


  • Originally built as Baku and commissioned in 1987, the carrier served with the Soviet Navy and later with the Russian Navy
  • This Soviet-era carrier was bought from Russia in 2004
  • On 14 June 2014 the Prime Minister of India formally inducted INS Vikramaditya into the Indian Navy and dedicated her to the nation.


Source The Hindu

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