India has taken step to provide security to its capital with a nuclear missile shield that is capable to intercept missiles fired from 5,000 km away, the Economics Times reported Saturday.
Two long-range missile-tracking radars have been placed in the national capital region. Senior government officials were quoted as saying that placing the radars is the beginning of an accelerated process in creating a missile cover for major Indian cities.
The government had ordered a major acceleration of the missile shield program immediately after coming to power last May, officials added.
Placing the long-range radars, Swordfish, developed with Israeli assistance, and capable of tracking incoming missiles from a range of 800 km is a first step that will be followed by placing missile interceptor units by 2016.
The missile shield system will require several dozen missiles to be produced annually in the first phase. Missile defense systems in India use both long- and short range interceptors.
Officials said, India was better prepared in developing short-range interceptor missiles. The long range system will require more tests. The growing sophistication of nuclear arsenal in India's neighborhood, the lack of a missile defense system was a major security gap.
India's missile shield program has fallen behind over the past two years. The program started in 2006 and 2009-12 saw many tests. However, 2013 and 2014 were lull years for the program. There was a failed test in April 2014, officials added.
The next Indian city to be covered is Mumbai.