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N- arsenal well stocked, Kakodkar assures army

Assuring the Army that it need not worry about the nuclear arsenal with India, a top nuclear official has disclosed that the country has a number of thermo nuclear bombs ranging from 50 to 200 kilotonnes yield to act as a strong deterrent.

delhi Updated: Dec 13, 2009 23:54 IST
HT Correspondent

Assuring the Army that it need not worry about the nuclear arsenal with India, a top nuclear official has disclosed that the country has a number of thermo nuclear bombs ranging from 50 to 200 kilotonnes yield to act as a strong deterrent.

Dr Anil Kakodkar, former chairman of Atomic Energy Commission who retired on November 30, said, “It’s a reliable and effective deterrent and the Army need have no concern about the nuclear arsenal.”

He was addressing publicly for the first time the doubts raised by ex-DRDO chief K. Santhanam about the yield of the thermo-nuclear device tested as part of Pokhran II in 1998.

Kakodar told Karan Thapar’s Devil’s Advocate programme on CNN-IBN that Dr. Santhanam’s claim that the thermonuclear device has not been weaponised was not true. “India has several thermonuclear bombs and adds that their yield is well above 50 kilotonnes each.”

Answering ex-Army chief Gen V P Malik’s remark that the Amy wants assurance of India's thermonuclear deterrent, Dr. Kakodkar said, “I think that is guaranteed. The Army should be confident and defend the country. There is no issue about the arsenal at their command.”

Dr. Kakodkar strongly refuted the claim made by Dr. Santhanam and Dr. P.K. Iyengar, a former Chairman of the AEC, that the yield of the thermonuclear test of 1998 was only 20-25 kilotonnes and not 45 kilotonnes. He said, “The AEC has six separate ways of measuring the yield and they all come to the same conclusion i.e. 45 kilotonnes.”