India’s longest-range ballistic missile, Agni-V, will be inducted into the nuclear arsenal very soon. It is an Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (IRBM) with a range of over 5,000 km and can reach most parts of China. Officials have said the missile features and latest technologies for navigation and improved accuracy. Earlier variants of the Agni family of long-range missiles have already been deployed. In September, the canisterised variant of the missile was successfully test-fired by the user, the Strategic Forces Command (SFC). The Agni series of missiles constitute the backbone of India’s nuclear weapons delivery, which also included the Prithvi short-range ballistic missiles and fighter aircraft. The submarine-based nuclear arsenal, which assures second strike capability in the fact of the proclaimed No-First-Use policy, is taking shape. While one nuclear ballistic missile has been inducted, more submarines and longer range submarine-launched ballistic missiles are under various stages of development.
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