Speaking at the launch of India's first indigenously designed and built aircraft carrier INS Vikrant in Kochi, Antony congratulated the Cochin Shipyard authorities and the naval team for their contribution in launching the first indigenous aircraft carrier.
"India is marching forward, there can be some setbacks, but surely in 10 to 15 years, India will be among top economies in the world," Antony said.
"We need a strong navy to defend our mainland," he added.
The Defence Minister further said 'we must continue the process of developing indigenous capability to secure our maritime interests'.
Defence Minister A K Antony's wife Elizabeth launched the 37,500 tonne carrier at the Kochi shipyard close to four-and-a-half years after its keel was laid by the minister.
Apart from domestic design and manufacturing work, it is the high grade warship steel made by the Steel Authority of India which has been used for building the ship. Mig 29K, Light Combat Aircraft and Kamov 31 could fly from the carrier.
The other countries, which are capable of designing and building an equivalent size ship, are the US, the UK, Russia and France.
--ANI (Posted on 12-08-2013)