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Manmohan backs Pokhran II tests

PTI  Ramsar, August 29, 2009
First Published: 11:51 IST(29/8/2009) | Last Updated: 16:51 IST(29/8/2009)

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday said the recent controversy over the 1998 Pokhran tests was "needless" and that former president A P J Abdul Kalam has clarified that the explosions were successful.


"A wrong impression has been given by some scientists which is needless. Kalam has clarified that the tests were successful," Singh told reporters in Ramsar.

He was asked about the bombshell dropped by a former DRDO scientist K Santhanam that the Pokhran-II was not a full success.

Santhanam, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) representative for the tests, had claimed that the thermonuclear or hydrogen bomb was of low yield and not the one that would meet the country's strategic objectives. He said India needed to conduct more atomic tests and should not sign CTBT.

But Kalam, who was the Director General of the DRDO during Pokhran-II, maintained that from the data obtained by seismic and radioactive measurements it had been established by the project team that the "design yield of the thermo-nuclear test has been obtained."

R Chidambaram, who was the Chairman of the Department of Atomic Energy in 1998, also dubbed the suggestion as "absurd".

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