In 2018, Then Chairman of Armament Research Board, Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), S K Salwan claimed that India is capable of developing an ICBM that can hit targets beyond the range of 10,000 km and besides the Agni-VI’s ground version, the DRDO is simultaneously also working out on its underground variant of the missiles.

According to a report from ” Frontier India”, DRDO has commenced developmental work that might lead to the fabrication of the first Agni-VI ICBM in the next 3 years. It’s not clear if India will be testing this ICBM by 2025-26 but it indicates that Agni-VI developmental is currently shifted from the design and technology maturity phase to the actual developmental phase.

Many Indian defense analysts believe that Agni-VI will be a Ground-based variant of the K-6 submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM) that has been under cleared for development for a while now. K-6 SLBM is an ICBM with a range of 7000-8000km with a full load and 10000km with a lighter load. K-5 is an immediate predecessor that has a range of 5000-6000km and will be first seen on the S4 and S4* SSBN (Enlarged Arihant Class ) that are to be inducted in the next 2 years.

It has been nearly a decade ago when Agni-V with a range of 5000-8000km was first tested by India and seen then the focus shifted off the DRDO shifted in the development of K-4, K-5, and K-6 SLBMs from the K-Family series that are crucial components for India’s second strike nuclear capabilities.

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