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Russia to deliver 18 more Smerch rocket launchers to India

Smerch is a force-multiplier called by some experts as 'poor nations' strategic missile'

MOSCOW (BNS): Russia will deliver an additional 18 Smerch multiple rocket launch systems to India, Russian state-run arms exporter Rosoboronexport announced on Wednesday.

An agreement to this effect was reached during the Russian defence minister's recent visit to Delhi, Nikolai Dimidyuk of Rosoboronexport said, according to a RIA Novosti report.

Smerch MRLS can effectively engage any type of target within a range of 20 to 90 km and is operated by a crew of three servicemen.

Under a $450 million contract signed in 2006, Russia will start delivering 38 Smerch-M 952-2 MRLSs to India. In August, Rosoboronexport signed a $300 million contract for the delivery of additional Smerch systems, the agency said.

The Smerch long-range rocket systems have a range of over 60 km, almost three times the distance of the present Indian artillery rocket systems.

Designed by Tula-based 'Splav' complex, Smerch, is a force-multiplier called by some experts as 'poor nations' strategic missiles'.

With a single salvo of 12 rockets armed with conventional charge and smart weapons it can completely destroy armoured columns and bunkers over the area of six square kilometres, experts say.

(with inputs from PTI )

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