Monday saw the beginning of the trials of the third generation anti-tank missiles ‘Nag’ in a western desert in Rajasthan. The trials were successful on Tuesday when the missile successfully blew up its target.
Sources inside the Defence Research and Development Organisation confirmed that the trials were successful. The missile system is equipped with the latest highly advanced Imaging Infrared Radar seeker with integrated avionics, a technology which only a few nations possess.
The tests were witnessed by scientists from the DRDO Defence Lab, Jodhpur, and senior officials from the armed forces. The missile system is a ‘fire-and-forget’ anti-tank missile developed among five other missile systems by the DRDO under the Integrated Guided Missile Development costing about Rs 3 billion.
The missile has been developed in two versions, namely the NAMICA and the HELINA. The NAMICA version requires a lock-on target before launch and the HELINA version is fired in the general direction of the target with lock-on target required after launch as it approaches its target.
The scientific advisor, G. Satheesh Reddy, to the defense minister, Arun Jaitley, was present at the testing and told the Press Trust of India that the successful test of the missile had strengthened the defense capabilities of the country. Dr. S. Christopher, the chairman of the Defence Research and Development Organisation, congratulated everyone who was a part of the mission.
The Minister of State for Defence, Dr. Subhash Bhamre assured that India is capable of countering dual attacks if any and the missile technology assures our borders’ safety in case of any dual attacks on Indian land.
Besides the Nag, there are only a handful other ‘fire-and-forget’ missile systems in the world. They include the American Javelin and the Israeli Spike, both light missiles capable of being carried by foot soldiers. The Nag is a more powerful missile system that has been designed to be operated from vehicles and helicopters.