India Declares Itself Major Missile Power

India's Agni-V missile lifts off from the launch pad at Wheeler Island off India's east coast, April 19, 2012.
India's Agni-V missile lifts off from the launch pad at Wheeler Island off India's east coast, April 19, 2012.

India Thursday said it successfully test-fired a new missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead as far as Beijing - announcing itself as a major "missile power."

Indian media showed video of the long-range Agni-V missile in-flight after its launch from a test range in the eastern state of Orissa.  

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh congratulated the country's scientists for contributing to the country's "self reliance in defense." India's Defense Research and Development Organization chief Vijay Saraswat told Indian media that the country now has missile capabilities that match with the world's elite military powers.

"The successful launch of Agni V missile is a tribute to the sophistications and commitment to national causes on the part of India's scientific technological community," said Singh. "I congratulate all the scientists and technologists who have been associated with this important project and I sincerely hope that in years to come our scientists and technologists will contribute a lot more to promoting self reliance in defense and other walks of national life."

India's AGNI V Missile

About the missile

The Agni-V has a range of 5,000 kilometers and had been described as a "quantum leap" in India's strategic capability - able to carry nuclear warheads as far as the Chinese capital as well as Shanghai.  

When asked about the launch at a press briefing in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said China and India are not competitors, but partners.  He said both sides should work together to deepen strategic cooperation, promote mutual development and maintain peace and stability in the region.

Chinese warning

China's communist party newspaper, the Global Times, responded to India's test launch with a warning of its own, saying "India would stand no chance in an overall arms race with China" for the foreseeable future.

India's longtime rival, Pakistan, had no official reaction to the missile launch. But Foreign Ministry spokesman Moazam Ahmad Khan said Thursday that Pakistan was informed of the missile test prior to the launch in accordance with a standing bilateral agreement.

Prior to the test launch, Indian officials cautioned the missile should not be seen as a threat. Ravi Gupta, a spokesman for India's Defense Research and Development Organization, said India has a "no first use" policy and that India's missile systems are not "country specific."

In Washington Thursday, U.S. State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner said the United States urges all nuclear-capable states to exercise restraint.

India has been testing its ballistic missile defense system since 2006. If it becomes viable, India would become one of the few nations with a working missile shield.

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Comment Sorting
Comments page of 3
by: liew
April 21, 2012 7:47 PM
Take your newly developed Missile to war with any country and test it whether it can work or not just developed keep in store as logistic is not worth. Look at USA , they rely test on battlefield that's what we want or look for old enemy and test on them.

by: Shoiab
April 21, 2012 7:42 AM
Jonathan Huang i think u did not have knowledge about history . who occupied other countries land and attacked others creating terrorism etc etc.
China and Pakistan The Real Evils for all world.. The Epic Fails.

by: Jonathan Huang
April 20, 2012 1:54 PM
To Alena from Russia. are you serious? India never attacked other countries? India and Pakistan have been being in war for decades and India never killed one single Pakistani? The civil war in Sri lankan also involved India. And India still occupying thousands square kilometers Chinese territories. Why a peaceful country needs two aircraft carriers? there is no sea between China and India. Kashmir is also far from the ocean!

by: Alena
April 20, 2012 7:36 AM
I am happy to hearing the great news . India is a beautiful,cultural country who never attacked other countries always talk to others and Solved the problems .
But the neighbor's countries always create terrorism and threatening and its best way to self defense. Salute To India !

by: Grace
April 20, 2012 7:24 AM
Good job by india !

by: John .N
April 20, 2012 7:19 AM
to all Indian, I am surprised that you all are floating with joys .To me it's stupidity ,ignorant and dangerous child play

by: michael
April 20, 2012 6:12 AM
Becoming an "elite military power" imposes more requirements than it is probably worth, since the persons in charge of the military power must have formulated the difference between Farabism and management of real duty. If they have not done so, the weapons are a liability

by: Indian
April 20, 2012 4:06 AM
Good thing at-least they showed right India map...

April 20, 2012 3:15 AM

April 19, 2012 10:15 PM
Every man ,animal has birth right to protect him from attack ,agression ,assault of another . INDIA has tested such missiles only for protection not for attack to other. This can be used in time of need of undue attack of other cruel mischivous foreign force. This would be preserved peacefully. Then why the foreign countries are annoyed and becoming jealous despite they have tested far earlier.
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