Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], September 19 (ANI): De-commissioned INS Viraat, a Centaur Class Aircraft Carrier, which was in service for 30 years, moves out of the Naval Dockyard for a ship-breaking yard in Gujarat.
INS Viraat, the second Centaur-Class aircraft carrier-in-service, which has spent 30 years in the Indian Navy and 27 years in the Royal Navy, was decommissioned in August 2017.
INS Viraat holds the world record, as mentioned in the Guinness Book of records, for being the longest-serving warship of the world. The ship which was the centerpiece of the Navy housed the fighters Sea Harriers of INAS 300, popularly called 'White Tigers', Anti Submarine aircraft Sea king Mk 42B - also known as 'Harpoons' - Sea King Mk 42 C and the SAR helicopter Chetak as an integral flight.
Under the Indian Flag, the ship has clocked more than 22,622 flying hours by various aircraft in the past three decades and has spent nearly 2,252 days at sea sailing across 5,88,287 nautical miles (10,94,215 KM).
This implies that Viraat has spent seven years at sea, circumnavigating the globe 27 times.
Since her inception, she has had a total of 80,715 hours of boilers running. Viraat played a major role in Operation Jupiter in 1989, during the Sri Lankan Peacekeeping operation, after which she was affiliated with the Garhwal Rifles and Scouts of the Indian Army in 1990.
She also saw action during Op Parakram in 2001-2002, post the terrorist attack on Parliament. The ship was instrumental in honing the art of flying operations from a carrier deck in the Navy, which also resulted in seamless induction of INS Vikramaditya and its integration with the fleet.
The ship has participated in various international joint exercises like Exercise Malabar (USA), exercise Varuna (French), Naseem-Al-Bahar (Oman Navy). She has also been an integral element of all annual theatre level exercises (TROPEX).
The last operational deployment of Viraat was for the International Fleet Review (IFR 2016) off Vishakhapatnam in February 2016. 'Mother', as she was fondly referred to in the Navy, had been commanded by 22 Captains since 1987.
The legacy of Viraat will be carried forward by INS Vikramaditya, which is already integrated with the fleet, and INS Vikrant which will be inducted in the next few years. (ANI)