The successful test of Nirbhay (fearless) on Tuesday is a shot in the arm for India’s missile program and a feather in the cap for India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). According to the DRDO, “the missile majestically cruised for a total time of 50 minutes, achieving a range of 647 km. The missile was tracked with the help of ground-based radars and other parameters were monitored by indigenous telemetry stations developed by DRDO.”
Tagged as the country’s first indigenously designed and developed long-range subsonic cruise missile, Nirbhay can cruise at 0.7 Mach at altitudes as low as 100 m to avoid enemy radars, and has the capability to loiter around the target area for some time, and strike only when a target is identified.
With a range of over 1000 km, and capable of carrying a 300 kg conventional or nuclear warhead, it can be deployed from multiple platforms on land, air or sea, and puts India in a select club of nations capable of producing such a missile.