Aircraft carrier: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh stated that the country has started working on its second aircraft carrier after the successful launch of the indigenously built INS Vikrant in September.
Speaking at an event on Friday, he hailed the successful launch of the INS Vikrant, saying India became the seventh country in the world to build an aircraft carrier.
"When India became Independent not even a needle was manufactured in the country. In 2022, we are building a massive aircraft carrier like INS Vikrant. The work has begun on our second aircraft carrier too" he added.
No one believed India was capable of making aircraft carrier: Singh
According to the Defence Minister, a few years ago, no one would have thought India was capable of doing such a thing. Notably, India is only the seventh country after the US, UK, France, Germany, China and Japan to have built an aircraft carrier.
Defence Minister Singh underscored that the INS Vikrant aircraft carrier has achieved 73-74 per cent indigenisation. Currently, India operates two aircraft carriers – Russian-built INS Vikramaditya and indigenously built INS Vikrant, a 40,000-tonne vessel.
Navy was considering a repeat order for INS Vikrant: Admiral Kumar
Last week, Navy chief Admiral R Hari Kumar had said the Navy was considering a repeat order for INS Vikrant to capitalise on the expertise available within the country.
Kumar said the Navy was yet to firm up its mind on building the indigenous aircraft carrier-2, a heavier vessel with 65,000 tonnes displacement.
Meanwhile, the Defence Minister said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appealed to businesses to ‘Make in India’ and ‘Make for the World' under the 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' initiative.
He said Tata-Airbus have laid the foundation in India for manufacturing the C-295 transport aircraft, which will also be exported to other countries. According to Singh, defence exports had already touched Rs 14,000 crore this year and were set to reach Rs 19,000 crore by the end of 2023.
Further, the Defence Minister also claimed India has set a target of Rs 25,000 in defence exports by 2024-25.
(With inputs from PTI)