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Our missile system reliable and safe, says Indian defence minister; review of SOPs underway

Pakistan has sought a joint inquiry into the incident, a demand India hasn’t yet responded to

Mar 15, 2022
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Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh

India is carrying out a review of the “standard operating procedures for maintenance and inspections", Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Tuesday, while assuring the reliability and safety of the weapons systems.  He also said that New Delhi attaches the highest priority to the safety and security of its weapons systems.

“I would also like to state that a review of the Standard Operating Procedures for operations, maintenance, and inspections is being conducted in the wake of this incident,” Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in Rajya Sabha, the upper house of Parliament. 

“We attach [the] highest priority to [the] safety and security of our weapon systems. If any shortcoming is found, the same would be immediately rectified,” Singh added. 

On 9 March, during routine maintenance and inspection, a missile was accidentally released, which had landed 124 km inside the territory of Pakistan. 

He further said, “A formal high-level inquiry has been ordered which would determine the exact cause of the said accident. I can assure the House that the missile system is very reliable and safe." 

On safety concerns about the weapons system, Singh said, “Our safety procedures and protocols are of the highest order and are reviewed from time to time. Our armed forces are well trained and disciplined and are well experienced in handling such situations.” 

Significantly, Pakistan has sought a joint inquiry into the incident, a demand India hasn't yet responded to. Meanwhile, the United States and China have called for dialogue and talks between two countries on the issues of mutual concerns, including the recent missile incident.

The Indian government statement came days after Islamabad raised a number of questions related to the reliability and safety of India’s strategic weapon systems. Pakistan also asked if the weapons were being controlled by professional soldiers or rogue elements with the forces. 

Furthermore, in the last few days, Pakistan 🇵🇰 Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi dialed officials of the UN and EU countries, briefing them about the incident, raising the concern over the safety and security of India’s strategic weapon systems. 

(SAM)

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