In hindsight, some officials are relieved that the boiler problems with the Gorshkov came up at this time, and not at a stage after the Indian Navy took charge of it.
While privately, Indian Navy officials admit that the December-handover now seems unlikely, they also clarify that the required repairs should not ordinarily take more than a month or so.
Minister of State for Defense, Mallipudi Mangapati Pallam Raju, accompanied by the deputy chief of the Indian Navy, Vice Admiral Satish Soni, asked the Bell Boeing V-22 Tiltrotor Team for a briefing on the aircraft.
Antony expressed India’s concern at the tardy progress made in the design and development of the Multi-Role Transport Aircraft (MTA). Both countries will now meet again later this month to speed up work on the project.
Defense Minister Arackaparambil Kurian Antony will be on a three-day visit to Russia next week, but will not get a chance to witness the ambitious Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) flight demonstration due to scheduling problems.
The first sea trials of the INS Vikramaditya, the erstwhile Russian carrier, Admiral Gorshkov, have been postponed by five months. Russian website RUSNAVY.com reports that the sortie, which was earlier scheduled for the end of this year, is now being planned for May 2012.
The Indian Navy came in for a hard rap from the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) Thursday for buying Russian MiG-29K combat planes without their weapons systems, rendering them toothless.
Russia’s MiG aircraft corporation has launched production of a new batch of carrier fighters for the Indian Navy, a MiG spokesman said.
The construction of India’s first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) at Cochin is expected to be completed in December this year, after which the warship will be launched, Defense Minister Arackaparambil Kurien Antony said Tuesday.