India will build tunnels in border states to store short-range missiles as its missile force takes shape | Daily News Byte


India plans to build multi-purpose tunnels in border states to store short-range land-based tactical missiles.

The development comes as India’s missile force, which has been in the works for some time, begins to take shape.

India is building a missile force

Reports say that the Indian armed forces may soon acquire the Pralai short-range tactical ballistic missile. The missile, tested in December last year, has a stated range of 150 to 500 kilometers.

This will enable Indian forces to target Chinese force concentrations along the Line of Actual Control and dual-use infrastructure in Tibet.

However, to reach Chinese bases in the interior of Tibet, the Pralai missile batteries will need to be located close to the Line of Actual Control.

The tunnels, once built, will be used to store these missiles. The tunnels will also protect the missiles from pre-emptive Chinese strikes and allow rapid deployment during a crisis.

India is building an integrated missile force not only to deter China, but also to bring existing missile assets under a unified architecture and doctrine.

The People’s Liberation Army Rocket Force (PLARF), formerly known as the Second Artillery Force, has the largest land-based conventional missile force in the world. Its evolution from the PLA’s Second Artillery Force to the PLARF, making it a service like the army, navy and air force, and a 33 percent increase in size in the three years between 2017 and 2019, indicate China’s increased reliance on the missile force.

In the event of a conflict with India, China would use missile power to hit key operational targets such as command and control centers, air bases, force concentrations, logistics hubs and other critical infrastructure in the initial stages of the war to degrade India’s ability to contend.

India has land-based missiles to respond to such an attack, but the options are severely limited compared to China and under the command of different services. Both the Indian Army and Air Force have BraMos land-based missiles, but the lack of joint operations or joint capabilities means they cannot be used optimally.

With an integrated missile force, India would achieve more efficient economies of scale and concentration of massive firepower.

Satellite images show that China is building tunnels on the plateau to allow it to store missiles and ammunition.

For example, recent satellite images show that China is building a large underground facility inside a small mountain formation. The underground facility adjoins the dual-purpose Shiga Airport, which is an important logistics center and air base for China in the region.


Source link