Indian Navy Says Goodbye to INS Viraat The World’s Oldest Aircraft Carrier :- On Sunday, the world’s oldest aircraft carrier – INS Viraat was accorded a grand send-off from the port city in Kochi after over five decades of its service to the Indian Navy.
In Kochi, a Navy official said that the ship, which underwent a decommissioning refit, is being towed back by 3 tugs to Mumbai for the decommissioning ceremony.
The final journey of the ship began with Navy officials led by the Chief of Staff, Rear Admiral Nadkarni, Southern Naval Command bidding farewell to the carrier at Ernakulam Wharf of Cochin Port Trust.
INS Viraat is expected to be decommissioned by end of this year, after 55 years of service, including 27 years with the Royal Navy (British Navy).
After the decommissioning of the ship, the Navy has agreed to hand over INS Viraat to Andhra Pradesh government.
The Government of Andhra Pradesh also had shown a keen interest in getting INS Viraat which is the oldest aircraft carrier operated by Indian Navy, to berth in Vizag for promotion of tourism after its decommissioning.