Journey Of Missiles In India

Guided missiles of India

India used rockets, for warfare, in 18th century. These rockets (also known as Mysorean rockets) were the first iron-cased rockets that were successfully deployed for military use. The British reverse-engineered these and introduced the technology to Europe (see Congreve rocket). When India became a British colony, scientific R&D in India was restricted and military science in India naturally lagged.

Mysorean rocket
Invented by Tipu Sultan

Research in missile technology resumed again in the late 1950s under the political leadership of Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru, independent India’s first prime minister. Successive Indian government after his, continued providing consistent political backing to the program. In 1982, India’s political and scientific leadership, which included prime minister Indira Gandhi, Defense Minister R. Venkataraman, V.S. Arunachalam (Scientific Advisor to the Defense Minister), Dr. Abdul Kalam (Director, DRDL) accelerated and gave new dimensions to the missile program, under the ‘Integrated Guided Missile Development Program’ (IGMDP). The IGMDP is one of India’s most successful defense research project, as all the missiles – Prithvi, Akash, Trishul, Nag, Agni – have been successfully tested and inducted by the Indian armed forces.

Indian missiles

After the end of the IGMDP (on 8 January 2008), India now develops all its current and future missiles as independent projects, and wherever possible, with private industries and foreign partners. (BrahMos is an example of one such successful collaborative project, between India and Russia).

Mysorean missiles..

Tipu Sultan’s troops rout the British using rockets in 1780 at the Battle of Guntur. The closely massed, British troops broke and ran when the Mysore army laid down a rocket barrage in their midst.
Mysorean rockets were the first iron-cased rockets that were successfully deployed for military use. Hyder Ali, the 18th century ruler of Mysore, and his son and successor, Tipu Sultan used them effectively against the British East India Company. Tipu Sultan’s military manual (called Fathul Mujahidin) even advocated that 200 rocket men should be assigned to each Mysorean Kushoon (brigade). These rocket men were also trained to launch the rockets. In addition, wheeled rocket launchers capable of launching five to ten rockets almost simultaneously were used in war.

Independent India

Democratic India’s missile programme dates back to the late 1950s, when Jawaharlal Nehru was the Prime Minister of India and Dr. D. S. Kothari was the Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister. In 1958, the government of India constituted a team of Indian scientists – called the Special Weapons Development Team – to research guided missile weapons development.
Motivated to strengthen its defences after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, and the prevailing international scenario of the time, the government of independent India renewed its focus on Indian missile technology development. Initially, the scientists of the Special Weapons Development Team worked from MetCalfe House (New Delhi), but the establishment later shifted to Hyderabad after the state government granted them the former Nizam’s army barracks. This was the genesis of the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) – earlier known as the Special Weapons Development Team – under DRDO, solely formed for missile technology research and development.

Motivated to strengthen its defences after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, and the prevailing international scenario of the time, the government of independent India renewed its focus on Indian missile technology development. Initially, the scientists of the Special Weapons Development Team worked from MetCalfe House (New Delhi), but the establishment later shifted to Hyderabad after the state government granted them the former Nizam’s army barracks. This was the genesis of the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) – earlier known as the Special Weapons Development Team – under DRDO, solely formed for missile technology research and development.

We will be back with another content of Missiles…….!!!!!!

Author: googleseye

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