India conducts ‘trial’ of surface-to-air missile

BALASORE – India on Tuesday ‘successfully’ conducted trials of its ‘indigenously-developed’ surface-to-air 'Akash' missile, which has a strike range of 25km, as part of a user trial by the Indian Air Force from the Integrated Test Range at Chandipur.

The ‘sophisticated’ Akash missile was test-fired from launch complex-3 of Integrated Test Range at about 11.42am, Indian media quoted defence sources as saying. Describing the trials as ‘successful,’ ITR director MV KV Prasad said the whole exercise was carried out as part of a user trial by the Indian Air Force.

Akash is a medium-range surface-to-air anti-aircraft defence system, developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). While the air force version has already been inducted, the Indian Army version is in the final stage of induction into the armed forces.

With its capability to neutralise aerial targets like fighter jets, cruise missiles and air-to-surface missiles, Indian defence ‘experts’ compare 'Akash' to the MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile system of the United States. The missile was last test fired from the same base on June 19.

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