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India successfully test fires 'Shaurya' missile

India successfully test fired 'Shaurya', a medium-range surface-to-surface ballistic missile, to be used by its Army. With a 600-km range, the missile is capable of hitting targets deep inside Pakistan and China.

The indigenous missile was launched from an underground facility with an in-built canister at 11.25 am from Complex-3 of the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur, DRDO sources said in Balasore (Orissa).

The sleek missile, with a flight duration of 485 seconds, roared into the sky leaving behind a thick yellow and white smoke on a clear sunny day, they added.

The sophisticated tactical missile is capable of carrying conventional warheads with a payload of about one tonne. "With longer shelf-life, as it is stored in a canister just like the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, the Shaurya is easily transportable and user-friendly. This is a technology development project," DRDO sources said in New Delhi.

Though there was speculation that the missile was a land version of the under development K-15 submarine launched ballistic missile, DRDO sources said the surface-to-surface missile had nothing to do with K-15 'Sagarika' project.

"The missile was test fired from a 30-40 feet deep pit with in-built canister specially designed for the purpose. There was no water in the pit," the sources said.

"The test was conducted to check some of the vital parameters of Shaurya missile," the DRDO sources said. The solid propellant, two-staged missile is little over 10 metres in length and about half-a-metre in width, they said.

During the test, the missile took off vertically and its entire trajectory was tracked through an integrated system of sophisticated radars, electro-optical tracking instruments, a chain of telemetry stations positioned in different points and two naval ships placed close to the impact point deep in the Bay of Bengal.

As a precautionary measure, the district administration of Balasore temporarily evacuated 364 families residing within two km radius of the launch site and took them to safety at a nearby shelter before the missile test.

The launch of Shaurya has come nearly nine months after India had successfully tested the 'Sagarika' missile under the K-15 project this February off the coast of Visakhapatnam from a pontoon simulating the conditions of a submarine.

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