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India to test Agni-5 ICBM by next year: DRDO chief

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A file photo of Agni missile

NEW DELHI (PTI): India is likely to enter the elite club of nations with Inter-Continental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) capability as the over 5,000 km range Agni-5 missile was expected to become a reality by next year.

"Work is progressing satisfactorily in the development of Agni-5, which is expected to become a reality next year. With this, DRDO would have given India a comprehensive indigenous strategic capability, available with only a few nations of the world," DRDO chief V K Saraswat said at the National Technology Day awards function here, Wednesday.

Agni-5 will be the first canistered ballistic missile with range of over 5,000 km into Indian inventory, bringing possible military targets in the whole of China and Pakistan within striking range. The missile is likely to be tested early next year.

Missiles which are capable of being launched from canisters can be fired from multiple platforms and are easily transportable.

Commenting on the Indian missile programme, Saraswat said, "The success of Agni-3 and other tests have confirmed India's strategic deterrence capability, which could not have been possible without the preceding developmental efforts in these programmes.

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