Ind joins elite club with Agni-5 that can hit China, Europe

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Agni missile
New Delhi, Apr 18: India will soon join the elite club of nations having Inter Continental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM) after the test launch of its 5,000 km-range Agni-5 missile planned on Wednesday. [Update: Agni-V successfully test-fired from Odisha]

The launch of the Agni-5 will make India the newest entrant among the hyper-exclusive club that boasts of United States, Russia and China as its members. Seen as a huge strategic leap, the missile will be so efficient and powerful that it can target most parts of Asia, including the northernmost parts of China and large parts of Europe as well. [UPDATE: Pakistan, China clash on India's Agni-V missile launch news]

The launch is scheduled to be held off Wheeler Island in Odisha and is expected to reach its target area in southern Indian Ocean. Defence Minister AK Antony is expected to attend the launch of the three stage solid-fuelled 50-tonne missile. [Read: Agni V: Chinese media ridicules; calls it "missile delusion"]

According to official sources, the missile will be test-fired over the full-range of 5,000 km. The launch will be closely monitored by DRDO scientist’s right from the point of launch to the point of impact in order to study its accuracy. [Read: Chinese wake up to Agni V power; says Ind has downplayed it]

As soon as the missile gets its place in the strategic forces in the next three years, New Delhi will attain deterrent capacity against China. The launch comes at an opportune time when Beijing has been involved in the deployment of strategic missiles in Tibet and Xinjiang autonomous regions against India. They have also been building its land forces in the region causing jitters in border areas. The Agni-5 ICBM, therefore, is eagerly awaited and will boost India’s confidence.

In 2011, multiple missile silos at Xiadulla across the Karakoram Pass in China's Xinjiang region was discovered by India leading to heightened alert by the Indian Air Force, especially along the line of actual control that is the de-facto border with China.

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