NEW DELHI: Pakistan conducted a ‘training exercise test’ of its tactical nuclear missile on Thursday which experts says is a weak ‘symbolic’ response to India’s successful test of a Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile.
Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations, the media wing of the army, called the test a ‘successful training launch of nuclear-capable surface-to-surface ballistic missile ‘Ghaznavi’, which can strike targets up to 290 km’.
The training launch was part of the field training exercise of Pakistan Army’s Strategic Forces Command aimed at rehearsing operational readiness procedures.
Defence experts called it a balancing act in response to India testing the 3500km range nuclear missile K-4 recently.
Pakistan had recently said it would develop a second-strike capability as well. It is yet to develop any missile with submarine launch capability.
A Vinod Kumar said, “It is a symbolic response to India’s successful launch of the K4. Pakistan has couched it in the language of operational readiness exercise. Since they don’t have an SLBM for a matching response, they had to demonstrate what they have.”
Kumar is Research Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses.
India’s SLBM K-4 missile is designed for the Arihant class of nuclear submarines. India successfully test-fired the indigenous missile on Sunday from a submerged pontoon off the Visakhapatnam coast.
In a similar reactionary response, Pakistan had test-fired ‘Ghaznavi’ on August 29 last year, three weeks after India revoked J&K’s special status.