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India’s Nuclear Triad Complete

  • 06 Nov 2018
  • 3 min read

Indigenous ballistic missile nuclear submarine INS Arihant achieved a milestone by completing its first deterrence patrol.

  • With this, India’s Nuclear Triad stated in its Nuclear Doctrine is now complete.
  • With Arihant, India has now entered into a club of nations that have the technological capability to design, build and operate nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines or ship submersible ballistic nuclear (SSBNs).
  • The US, France, Britain, China, and Russia currently have such capabilities.
  • The SSBN is the most dependable platform for a second-strike. Because they are powered by nuclear reactors, these submarines can stay underwater indefinitely without the enemy detecting it.
  • The second submarine in the series, Arighat is now undergoing sea trials after which it will be inducted into service.
  • Arihant was indigenously made under the Advanced Technology Vessel programme which was launched in the 1990s.

Deterrence Patrol

  • Deterrence Patrol means that Arihant was sailing the deep seas carrying ballistic missiles equipped with nuclear warheads.
  • A deterrence patrol is meant to deter an adversary from launching a first nuclear-strike since the SSBN can launch a retaliatory strike within minutes.

India’s Nuclear Doctrine

  • India conducted its first nuclear test in 1974 and the second nuclear test in 1998.
  • India declared herself a nuclear weapon state in 1998 and came forward with Nuclear Doctrine in 2003.
  • India's Nuclear Doctrine consist of the following major points:
    • India will build and maintain a credible minimum deterrence.
    • India will follow a No First Use policy i.e. India will use the weapon only in retaliation to a nuclear attack on Indian territory or against Indian forces anywhere.
    • Nuclear retaliation to a first strike will be massive to inflict unacceptable damage.
    • Retaliatory attacks will be authorized only by the civilian political leadership through the Nuclear Command Authority.
    • Nuclear weapons will not be used against non-nuclear weapon states.
    • India can retaliate with nuclear weapons in the event of an attack against on it with biological or chemical weapons.
    • India is committed to the goal of a nuclear weapons-free world, through global, verifiable and non-discriminatory disarmament.

Nuclear Triad

  • Nuclear triad, a three-sided military-force structure consisting of land-launched nuclear missiles, nuclear-missile-armed submarines, and strategic aircraft with nuclear bombs and missiles.
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