INS Arihant carried out a successful launch of a Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM) on October 14, 2022. The missile has a maximum range of about 750 Km.
The missile was tested to a predetermined range and impacted the target area in the Bay of Bengal with very high accuracy. All operational and technological parameters of the weapon system have been validated as per Ministry of Defence.
India has 03 operational Ballistic missile submarine, the INS Arihant (S 4) will be able to carry eight K-4 SLBMs and 24 K-15 SLBMs, reportedly twice of what older INS Arihant can be equipped with.
The successful user training launch of the SLBM by INS Arihant is significant to prove crew competency and validate the nuclear powered ballistic missile submarines (Sub Surface Ballistic Nuclear) SSBN programme, a key element of India’s nuclear deterrence capability. A robust, survivable and assured retaliatory capability is in keeping with India’s policy to have ‘Credible Minimum Deterrence’ that underpins its ‘No First Use’ commitment.
This firing reaffirmed India’s Credible Minimum Deterrence that supports No First Use (NFU) policy.
It is reported that more members of K-family reportedly to have been codenamed K-5 and K-6 with ranges of 5000 and 6000 km are also under development. While K-5 is expected to be submarine-launched solid fuel missile, while K-6 will be three-stage solid fuel MIRV capable missile.
With a “no first use” policy in place, these ‘K’ missiles are intrinsically important for India’s nuclear deterrence arsenal because they not only provide a much needed second-strike capability but also these can strike in retaliation thus achieving Credible Nuclear Deterrence.