India successfully test-fired indigenously developed long-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile, Agni-5, off the Odisha coast today. The state-of-the-art missile, developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation DRDO, was test fired successfully from the Abdul Kalam Wheeler Island at 9:54 AM. The three-stage solid propellant Agni-5 missile has a strike range of over 5,000 kilometres and can carry a nuclear warhead of more than one tonne. Defence sources said the missile covered 4,900 kilometres in 20 minutes in today’s launch.
AIR correspondent reports that the missile is about 17 metres long, 2 metres wide and has a launch weight of around 50 tonnes.Today’s test is the fifth developmental trial of the long-range missile, carried out by the Strategic Forces Command of Indian Army to check its operational readiness. Unlike other missiles of Agni series, the latest one ‘Agni-5’ is the most advanced having new technologies incorporated with it in terms of navigation and guidance, warhead and engine.
The missile can hit most northern parts of China and other parts of Asia, Europe and Africa. Defence sources said after some few more trials, Agni-5 will be inducted into the Services. Once this missile is inducted into Services, India will join the super exclusive club of countries with Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles alongside the US, Russia, China, France and the UK. The last test of the missile was conducted from the same test range on December 26, 2016.