Navy Chief Admiral R K Dhowan said aircraft carrier INS Viraat is on its last legs but the actual date of its decommissioning has not been decided yet.
“I must mention that INS Viraat has done excellent service to the Navy and the nation. I would like to congratulate the commanding officers and the entire ship company making sure that INS Viraat is maintained, operational at its peak efficiency. But now, it is on its last legs,” Dhowan said while addressing media following the Investiture Ceremony at Naval dockyard here onboard INS Viraat.
“We have not yet decided on the date but we certainly are looking at the aspect when the ship would be decommissioned,” he said.
When asked about prospects of turning the countrys flagship aircraft carrier into a museum after its decommissioning, Dhowan said, “Yes, we have proposed to the Ministry of Defence that it (INS Viraat) should be converted into a museum.”
“The MoD is in touch with various state governments who have made some proposals and these are under examination,” he added.
On other aspects, Dhowan said the Navy has tried to provide a good level of accommodation in all commands for officers and sailors.
“Around 6,000 houses have been built for officers and sailors under phase I and II of MAP (Married Accommodation Project). Besides, we have put forth a proposal of another 12,000 houses,” he said.
Underlining that accommodation problem was acute in Mumbai, the chief of Navy Staff said they have urged the MoD to sanction 4,000 houses for officers and sailors.
“We have seen accommodation problem has been largely sorted out at our stations in Kochi and Vishakhapatnam. But in Mumbai the problem is acute. We have cleared some pending projects and things have improved some extent. Apart from it, we have urged MoD to provide 4,000 houses and hope it would be sanctioned soon,” he said.