India is preparing to test its Agni-V intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). Agni-V is capable of reaching the northern parts of China, reported The Times of India. Agni's earlier versions, which have been inducted in the armed forces, can reach anywhere in Pakistan and parts of western China.
Reports suggest that testing of this missile is being done after a gap of few years. The missile was tested in 2012, 2013 and 2015 but was reported to have a technical glitch.
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) had announced a glitch in the missile technology earlier this year. When asked about the much-delayed fourth test of Agni-V, DRDO chief S Christopher had earlier said in July, "The problem is solvable and the next test-firing of Agni-V is expected by the year-end.
About the delay, he had said, "It has been delayed because of a technical snag. There is a problem with the battery."
There were also reports that the test was postponed due to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the US. Christopher had denied the reports, stating: "The reasons for delay are only technical" IANS had reported.
About the timeframe for the next test, the DRDO chief had said: "Our colleagues have said the issue can be resolved. We will do a test before the end of this year."
This missile is strategically important as it is expected to keep a watch on China, said the reports.
Reports say that India will be the fifth country to possess this missile after America, Russia, China, France and England.
"This will be the final test of the three-stage Agni-V, which will be tested for its full range, before the Strategic Forces Command (SFC) begins its user trials," a source told The Times Of India.
The Agni-V is the most advanced version of the indigenously built Agni, or Fire, series, part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) that started in the 1960s and was once overseen by APJ Abdul Kalam.
Agni-V is a three-stage missile designed to carry over one-tonne warhead. Its 5,000 km range gives it the farthest reach among all Indian missiles.
With inputs from IANS
Updated Date: Dec 14, 2016 15:07:11 IST