For Decades China was believed to have a relatively small nuclear arsenal compared to other nuclear-armed states, with estimates ranging from around 280 to 320 nuclear warheads. However, China has been steadily modernizing its nuclear weapons, including the development of new types of nuclear missiles and submarine-launched nuclear missiles.

Like other nuclear-armed states, China’s nuclear weapons program has been a source of concern and tension in international relations. The country has faced criticism for not being more transparent about its nuclear capabilities and for not participating in arms control negotiations, such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

It is not accurate to say that the Pentagon has released a report stating that China will possess 1,500 nuclear warheads by 2035. While the Pentagon does release regular reports on the state of China’s military, I am not aware of any recent report that makes such a specific prediction about China’s nuclear weapons stockpile.

It is important to note that making predictions size of a country’s nuclear arsenal is inherently uncertain and dependent on a range of factors, including the country’s strategic goals and priorities, its technological capabilities, and international developments. It is not possible to accurately predict with certainty the size of China’s nuclear arsenal in the future will be but it should be a matter of concern for its neighbours especially India with whom it has troubled border issues.

India being a nuclear-armed state which has a nuclear weapons program that dates back to the 1970s. The country conducted its first nuclear test in 1974 and has since conducted several more nuclear tests. It is believed that India has a stockpile of around 130-140 nuclear warheads, although the exact size of the stockpile is not known for certain as India’s nuclear weapons program is not transparent nor officially nuclear stockpile acknowledged.

India like China has adopted NFU when it comes to nuclear strikes. India’s “no first use” (NFU) nuclear doctrine is a policy that states that India will not use nuclear weapons first in a conflict. This means that India would only consider using nuclear weapons in response to a nuclear attack on its territory or its armed forces. The policy was first announced by Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1998 after India conducted a series of nuclear tests.

India’s NFU policy has been seen as an important aspect of its nuclear deterrence strategy, as it helps to clarify the circumstances under which India would consider using nuclear weapons and can help to reduce the risk of nuclear conflict. However, some have questioned the viability of the NFU policy, arguing that it could be difficult to determine whether a nuclear attack has occurred and that the policy could limit India’s options in a crisis.

India is in the process of developing its nuclear triad. The country already has land-based nuclear missiles, including the Agni series of intermediate-range and intercontinental-range ballistic missiles, and is developing aircraft-based nuclear weapons, including the development of a nuclear-capable version of the Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jet.

India is also building a nuclear-powered submarine, the INS Arihant, which will be capable of launching nuclear missiles. Once the INS Arihant and its sister ships like S3, S4 and S4 star become operational, India will have a complete nuclear triad but it will require more nukes for its nuclear submarine fleet for which it also needs to factor in that the Chinese arsenal will also be growing in the next 15 years.

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Article by SATYAJEET KUMAR ,  cannot be republished Partially or Full without consent from Writer or