Diplomacy

Indian parliamentarians get exposure to United Kingdom largest aircraft carrier

Photo: Indian parliamentarians on the flight deck of HMS Prince of Wales.

New Delhi: Six Indian parliamentarians toured the United Kingdom‘s brand new aircraft carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, on Jan. 16, as part of the UK-India Chevening Parliamentarian Fellowship Programme.

They were given the opportunity to see the bridge, aircraft hangar, and flight deck of the warship, which is the largest ever to be built for the UK, a statement from the British High Commission to India here said today.

HMS Prince of Wales is one of two Royal Navy aircraft carriers and was commissioned on Dec. 10, 2019. Its sister aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, will operate in the Indian Ocean Region on her first operational deployment in 2021.

Photo: United Kingdom’s two aircraft carriers in tandem during Indian MPs’ tour.

The parliamentarians are in the UK for a week, focusing on five UK-India priorities: climate change, public healthcare, parliamentary democracy, finance, and defence and security.

They were also hosted in the House of Lords, met the Chief Executive of University College London Hospital, and discussed cyber security at the University of Portsmouth.

“The Royal Navy and Indian Navy share a long and rich maritime history. The Carrier Capability Partnership we have established allows us to share best practice from the UK’s carrier programme.

In doing so, and developing our respective national capabilities in tandem, we build greater interoperability and mutual understanding,” UK Carrier Strike Group Commander Commodore Stephen Moorhouse said.

Photo: Indian MPs on the bridge of HMS Prince of Wales aircraft carrier.

The Chevening Parliamentarian Fellowship Programme is a week-long programme in the UK, which gives Indian Member of Parliament (MPs) the opportunity to discuss key contemporary issues impacting the world with counterparts and other senior interlocutors in the UK.

The MPs are meeting the UK’s top opinion formers and decision-makers to exchange ideas, solutions and develop future networks and contacts.

The tailor-made programme focuses on leadership, international relations, social and public policy as well as issues relevant to both India and the UK such as clean energy, health, education and smart cities. The programme is hosted by London School of Economics (LSE).

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