India successfully carried out a "first pre-induction trial" of the Agni-V missile, in a move which will further ratchet up tensions with neighbours Pakistan. "(This) was simply a developmental test before India inducts it into operational range", Narang said.
It was conducted off a test range from Odisha's Abdul Kalam island. The three-stage missile zoomed to a height of over 600km in its parabolic trajectory and then splashed down around 4,900km away towards Australia in the Indian Ocean barely 19 minutes later.
The country's fire power and defence capabilities will get a major boost with the success of five consecutive missions, said S Christopher, Chairman, DRDO and Secretary, DDR&D, under the Ministry of Defence. Agni-IV and Agni-V, in turn, have been developed with China in mind.
A third source said the country will hold another test "within this year".More news: Autopsy Shows Roy Halladay Had Morphine In System At Time Of Death
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According to the Federation of American Scientists, India possesses around 130 nuclear warheads, which is a modest figure compared to the USA and Russia who both have several thousand each.
China criticized the missile according to a report in the Global Times, a state-run newspaper, slamming India's desire to enter the global intercontinental missile club.
Once inducted, India joins the USA, the UK, Russia, China and France - owning intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs). Sparked by China's decision in June to construct a road in the Doklam Plateau, a region claimed by both Beijing and the tiny Indian ally Bhutan, the friction lasted months and prompted both China and India to beef up the troop presence there.