The navy is expecting a decision soon on converting INS Viraat, which is set to be decommissioned on March 6, into a hotel and Museum.
The proposal on Andhra Pradesh administration to convert INS Viraat into a hotel and museum, which is set to be decommissioned on March 6, said Vice Admiral Girish Luthra.
“That offer is the discussion between the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and the Government of Andhra Pradesh, which is in Process and a final decision is expected very soon from New Delhi. Discussions are not done from our head office here, but from New Delhi,” the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Western Naval Command told reporters.
It also pointed out that INS Viraats decommissioning is just a week away, Luthra said, “We are expecting a decision very soon. That is our expectation.”
According to the early reports, the discussions area going on regarding converting AP Governments INS Viraat into luxury hotel-cum-museum after its decommissioning talks. The carrier is expected to berth on the coast of Visakhapatnam by mid-2017.
In last year December, Vice-Admiral HCS Bisht and Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief Vishakhapatnam said that Andhra Pradesh was the topmost contender for getting the royal warship. “The government had shown interest on getting INS Viraat to berth in Vizag for promotion of travel once it is decommissioned and turning it into a ship museum,” he had said.
When questioned about the future of the ship, Luthra said, “A thorough study about the physical condition of INS Viraat will decide the future, as the airplane carrier is going to be decommissioned on March 6.”
“In the ship is not rehabilitated into a museum, and if not used as the target one then we work out its reserve price, based on the tenders it has issued and according to the price the ship goes to scrap yard. A study has been done on the price of the ship and it is not shared publicly. The naval staff is also not very much involved in it,” Luthra said.