Missile Hegemony: India Test Fires Two Rounds of Nuclear Capable Missile Amid Pakistan Tensions

The missile would be crucial in any limited war scenario with Pakistan and comes a day after Islamabad completed the test launch of its own surface-to-surface ballistic missile, the Shaheen-1.

India’s strategic forces command successfully carried out two rounds of test of the homegrown nuclear-capable surface-to-surface ballistic missile Prithvi-II from a test facility off the Odisha coast on Wednesday.

The missile is equipped with a domestically-produced guidance system and is capable of carrying warheads of up to 1,000 kg. Constructed under the integrated guided missile development programme overseen by the state-owned Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), the 350-kilometer range Prithvi-II was inducted into the Indian armed forces in 2003.

The test follows the maiden night trial of another homegrown missile, the 2,000-kilometer ranged Agni-II which recently underwent tests on Abdul Kalam Island.

Indian defence scientists plan tests of the K4 submarine-launched missile, and Brahmos supersonic cruise missile in the coming days. The long-range (3,500 km) K-4 missiles have so far been tested four times successfully via underwater pontoons.

The tests came against the backdrop of persistent firing at the Pakistan border during the last three months after New Delhi abrogated the special status granted to the state of Jammu and Kashmir on 5 August.