India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully conducted a flight test of the ‘Agni Prime’ ballistic missile, off the coast of Odisha, on June 07, in what GlobalData analysts described as a “key milestone for India.” This comes seven months after India announced the successful test launch of the Agnes III intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM), in November 2022.
The operators users successfully conducted the first pre-induction night launch of the missile following three successful developmental trials. The launch served as a validation of the system’s accuracy and reliability, according to a Ministry of Defence release. Senior DRDO and Strategic Forces Command personnel saw the successful flight test, another step towards the system’s induction into the Armed Forces.
Kandlikar Venkatesh, a defence and aerospace analyst for GlobalData said that the “successful development of the Agni Prime missile is a significant milestone for India, demonstrating its progress in indigenous defence manufacturing and its ambition to achieve self-reliance in advanced missile technologies.”
With its lower weight and better mobility, the Agni Prime is a more difficult target for opposing air defences, enhancing India’s offensive capabilities. This advancement heightens India’s status as a technologically sophisticated military power and will influence regional security dynamics in the Asia-Pacific region.
Venkatesh believes that the successful deployment of the Agni Prime missile system has geopolitical consequences, communicating India’s improved military capability and commitment to maintaining a credible deterrent posture. “This message may influence the calculations and behaviours of neighbouring countries, potentially leading to shifts in regional power dynamics and fostering stability through deterrence,” said Venkatesh.
“Overall, the Agni Prime’s development strengthens India’s defence capabilities, highlights its self-reliance in defence manufacturing, and positions India as a strategically significant player in the region,” Venkatesh continued.
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To monitor the test flight, various Range Instrumentation systems, such as radar, telemetry, and electro-optical tracking systems, were strategically positioned at multiple locations, with two down-range ships positioned at the terminal point, gathering comprehensive flight data that encompassed the entirety of the vehicle’s trajectory.