By Jay Shankar/Bloomberg
India successfully tested a nuclear- capable ballistic missile today from a site in the eastern state of Orissa, a defense ministry official said.
“The Prithvi-1 missile had a successful test,” said Prahlada, chief controller of research and development at the Defense Research and Development Organization, which makes the missiles. “Every year, we take one missile from the production lot for testing. We test the missile for range and accuracy.”
The surface-to-surface missile has a range of 150 kilometres (93 miles), Prahlada said in a phone interview from New Delhi. It was fired from the Chandipur-on-Sea test range.
“The missile has been tested 20 times” since 1988, when it was first fired, Prahlada said. “This is the version meant for the army, so we don’t need a big range.”
India and Pakistan, both nuclear-capable powers, have tested a series of missiles since 2002, when the two countries came close to a fourth war. The South Asian neighbors have sought to repair relations since April 2003.