Saturday, June 6, 2009

INDIA'S MISSILE INITIATIVES

Tracking the history though India perhaps is the first country in the world where missiles were used in war (by Tipu Sultan against the British), India woke up to its missile potential much later.After two failed efforts, i,e Valiant Program and Project Devil to develop ballistic missiles SAM in 1970s,in 1983 India started a missile development program under the aegis of DRDO.National security, threat from China and Pakistan, power balance in the South East Asian region are the main factors behind India's missile initiatives.Under Integrated Guided Missile Development Programmer, started in 1983,Indian Missile development today is under two groups
- Tactical missiles, such as the Brahmos, Astra, LRSAM and the SRSAM
- Strategic missiles such as Agni 3, Agni-5, AAD, AD-1, etc.
One of the earliest missiles is Prithvi, a surface to surface missile with a range of 250 km.Its naval version is Dhanush with a range of 150 km.Nag is a third generation, anti tank missile using fire and forget technology.Agni is a re entry technology demonstrator missile.A-I,II and III are part of the project, with range varying from 500 to 3500km.Astra is air to air targetting missile whereas Brahmos is the latest anti ship cruise missile developed in collaboration with Russia.Shourya is being developed as inter continental ballistic missile.
Some of the future missiles of India's aresenal includes HSTDV,SRSAM,LRSAM etc.
Although India depends on countries like Israel, Russia for the development or import of missiles, it must be noted that within just a quarter century India has made a remarkable progress towards being self sufficient in missile technology.The role of DRDO and the "missile man" Dr A.P.J Abdul Kalam's name in this regard hold much significance.

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