India is in the process of inducting the first batch of its intercontinental ballistic missile system (ICBM) – Agni-V – into the nuclear arsenal very soon, which will bring targets across China within its range, and is expected to significantly bolster the country’s military prowess.
- The missile system, capable of carrying nuclear warhead, is being inducted into the elite Strategic Forces Command.
- It has been successfully test-fired six times & all the tests have been successful.
- Other pre-induction tests are being planned in next few weeks.
Agni-V has strike range of 5,000 km
- With a strike range of 5,000 km, Agni-V is capable of bringing targets across China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong, under its range
- India currently has Agni-1 with a 700-km range, Agni-2 with a 2,000-km range, Agni-3 and Agni-4 with a 2,500-km to more than 3,500-km range
- The Agni-V actually has the potential to reach targets 8,000 km away, but the Indian government had deliberately downplayed the missile’s capability in order to avoid causing concern to other countries.
- The official said the missile features the latest technologies for navigation and improved accuracy.
- The Agni series of missiles constitute the backbone of India’s nuclear weapons delivery, which also includes the Prithvi short-range ballistic missiles and fighter aircraft.
- The submarine-based nuclear arsenal, which assures second strike capability in the face of the proclaimed no-first-use policy, is taking shape.