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In a recent Hindustan Times column, Admiral Arun Prakash (Retd.), a former Chief of the Naval Staff, called for an expedited development program for the K-series of submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). These missiles, designed to be equipped with Multiple Independently Re-entry Vehicles (MIRVs), would significantly enhance India’s nuclear deterrence capabilities.

Admiral Prakash emphasizes the growing importance of a robust underwater leg for India’s nuclear triad – a deterrent system encompassing land-based ballistic missiles, airborne nuclear bombs, and sea-launched ballistic missiles. SLBMs offer a distinct advantage due to their mobility and stealth, making them a critical factor in maintaining credible deterrence.

The K-series missiles are a new generation of SLBMs being developed by India. These missiles are expected to have a longer range and carry MIRVs, making them a significant leap forward in India’s underwater nuclear deterrence capabilities.

DRDO has developed K-15 (1500km) and K-4 (3500km) range SLBMs for the Indian Navy that are active on the Arihant Class of submarines. Recent report by confirms that DRDO is also developing K-5 (5000km) SLBM that could be first SLBM equipped with MIRVs. DRDO also has been given permission to develop K-6 (6000km) SLBM that will be equipped on the S5 Class of Nuclear submarines that is called as True SSBN with submerged displacement of 13000-tons.