September 14, 2015

Aircraft carrier, most likely INS Vikramaditya, to host armed forces meeting; idea mooted by PM Narendra Modi

NEW DELHI: In a first, India's annual conference of top military commanders, where national defence policy, doctrine and operational challenges are discussed threadbare, may be held outside the capital - onboard aircraft carrier, most likely INS Vikramaditya.
 The annual apex meeting of military leaders from the three armed forces has traditionally been held in South Block but for the first time is scheduled to take place in the naval town of Kochi — a move initiated with PM Narendra Modi's personal intervention.PM Modi, who mooted the idea of moving the annual conference first to sea and then to forward army camps and even air bases, is scheduled to address the meeting on October 10, officials familiar with preparations for the event told ET.
 While final details are to be worked out, sources said the meeting could take place on an Indian aircraft carrier, most likely the INS Vikramaditya, which was commissioned into service in 2013 and is the flag ship of the Indian Navy. Several major warships are expected to be in the area during the conference. "It is unprecedented. It is a historic first to have this meeting outside of Delhi and in an operational backdrop. Major preparations are on to ensure that things go off without a hitch," an official involved in organizing the event told ET. Officials shared that while speaking at the last edition of the conference in October 2014, Modi had said "commanders Conferences should be organized alternately on sea, in forward Army camps and at air bases, and not just in Delhi."


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