Defence Current Affairs - 2020

Defence Current Affairs of 2018-19 related to India’s Defence, Indian Armed Forces, Defence Production, Defence Acquisition and related matters for SSC, States Civils, UPSC and Other Competitive Examinations.

India completes nuclear triad by commissioning INS Arihant

India has completed its nuclear triad by inducting the first indigenously built strategic nuclear submarine INS Arihant into service.

With this, India becomes sixth country to have a nuclear triad i.e. capable of delivering nuclear weapons by aircraft, ballistic missiles and submarine launched missiles. Other countries having nuclear triad are Russia, United States, United Kingdom, France and China.

INS Arihant was formally commissioned by Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba in August 2016. However, it was kept secret owing to strategic significance.

What are features of INS Arihant?

  • INS Arihant is nuclear submarine capable of carrying nuclear tipped ballistic missiles. Thus it belongs to class ins-arihantreferred to as Ship Submersible Ballistic Nuclear (SSBN).
  • Its design is based on the Russian Akula-1 class submarine. It was built with Russia’s help under Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV) project started in the 1980s.
  • It weighs 6000 tonnes and is 112 metre long. It is powered by 83 MW pressurised light water nuclear reactor with enriched uranium fuel.
  • It will be armed with the K-15 Sagarika missiles with a range of 750 km. Later it will be armed with much longer range K-4 missiles (3,500 km range) being developed by DRDO.
  • The vessel was launched in 2009 by then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Since then, it had undergone extensive sea trials and reactor on board went critical in 2013.

What is Ship Submersible Ballistic Nuclear (SSBN)?

SSBNs are designed to prowl the deep ocean waters and carry nuclear weapons. They provide a nation with an assured second strike capability i.e. capability to strike back after being hit by nuclear weapons first. In case of India, second strike capability is particularly important as it had committed to a ‘No-First-Use’ policy as part of its nuclear doctrine.

Nuclear triad capability of India

  • India is sixth Nation in the world to possess Nuclear Triad. It means that India is capable of delivering nuclear weapons by aircraft, land based ballistic missiles and submarine launched missiles.
  • India Army has strong arsenal of land based ICBM (intercontinental ballistic missile). It includes Agni series, Prithvi series, Prahar Missile, Shaurya Missile, supersonic Brahmos and subsonic Nirbhay missiles.
  • Indian Airforce (IAF) operates Jaguars aircrafts which are designed for deep penetration strike and can carry nuclear bomb. Besides, IAF also has SU 30 MKI and Rafale aircrafts which can also be used to deliver nuclear weapons.
  • Indian Navy now has its own nuclear powered ballistic missile submarine INS Arihant capable of delivering nuclear weapons.

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BIMSTEC countries express commitment to combat terrorism in all its forms

The BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) countries have expressed commitment to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.

In this regard, seven nations of BIMSTEC countries have issues Leaders Retreat Outcome Document emphasising that there can be no justification for acts of terror.

Key Highlights of document

  • BIMSTEC countries strongly condemned the recent terror attacks in the region.
  • The states who encourage and support provide sanctuary to terrorists should be identified and held accountable. Strong measures against such states must be taken.
  • They recognised the need for urgent measures to counter and prevent the spread of terrorism, violent extremism and radicalization.
  • They renewed their commitment to the early conclusion of BIMSTEC Free Trade Area negotiations, and direct the Trade Negotiating Committee and Working Groups to expedite the finalization of its constituent Agreements.
  • They agreed to expedite the signing of the BIMSTEC Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters.
  • They also called for early ratification of the BIMSTEC Convention on Cooperation in Combating International Terrorism, Transnational Organized Crime and Illicit Drug Trafficking.
  • They also stressed the necessity of pursuing sustainable development and of the implementation of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
  • They also recognized that cooperation in sustainable development of fisheries in Bay of Bengal region for ensuring food security and improving livelihoods of people.

About BIMSTEC

  • BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative on Multi Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) is the sub-regional group of seven countries in South Asia and South East Asia lying in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal constituting a contiguous regional unity.
  • They are India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka (from South Asia) and Myanmar, Thailand (from South East Asia).
  • Established: 6 June 1997 through the Bangkok Declaration.
  • Headquarters: Dhaka, Bangladesh.
  • Objectives: Technological and economical cooperation among south Asian and south East Asian countries along the coast of the Bay of Bengal.
  • It also covers cooperation in commerce, technology, investment, agriculture, tourism, human resource development, fisheries, transport and communication, textiles, leather etc.

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