New Delhi: India Tuesday test-fired its first cruise missile called Nirbhay, but the launch was a failure as the missile's flight had to be terminated halfway after it deviated from its course.
"The lift-off was successful but the flight had to be terminated halfway. We have not been able to achieve complete range capability, but the mission objectives have been met," the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), which developed the missile, said in a statement.
The DRDO said it is examining the flight details.
The missile blasted off from a mobile launcher positioned in the launch pad – 3 of the ITR at about 11:54 AM.
The launch trial of the sophisticated missile was carried out in the presence of top defence scientists and senior officials.
The surface-to-surface missile has the capability of being launched from land, sea and air, they said, adding Nirbhay has good loitering capability, good control and guidance, high degree of accuracy in terms of impact and very good stealth features.
Nirbhay was developed by Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) laboratory based in Bangalore.
India has the technology of super-sonic missile like BrahMos which is jointly developed by India and Russia. BrahMos has the striking range of 290 km.
In the early morning, the Balasore district administration temporarily shifted 453 families, comprising 2,586 adult members and 698 children, residing within two km radius of the Launch pad-3 at the ITR to nearby shelter places during the test launch of the missile as a safety measures, said a district revenue officer here.
For this temporary shift of the families they were compensated, he said.