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India tests locally developed laser-guided ATGM

An Indian Army Arjun MBT is pictured above test-firing a locally developed laser-guided anti-tank guided missile. This test was carried out in September 2020 to assess capability at longer ranges. Tests on 28 June were conducted to validate firing at shorter ranges, the MoD said. (DRDO)

India test-fired on 28 June its locally developed laser-guided anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) from an Arjun main battle tank (MBT), the Ministry of Defence (MoD) in New Delhi said.

It said that the tests were intended for evaluating the weapon's ability to engage with targets at shorter ranges. Earlier trials of the ATGM were intended for validating its ability at longer ranges.

In a statement, the MoD said that the ATGM test was conducted by the Indian Army and the state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) at the KK Ranges near Ahmednagar, western India. The ranges are operated by the army's Armoured Corps Centre and School (ACC&S).

The MoD said the test is part of continuing trials to evaluate the ATGM from the Arjun MBT's 120 mm rifled gun. It also said that the weapon is being developed for other platforms but did not elaborate.

In the test, the ATGM “hit thebullseyewith textbook precision and successfully defeated the target at minimum ranges”, said the MoD. It added that “telemetry systems recorded [a] satisfactory flight performance of the missile”.

The MoD said that engaging targets at lower-ranges is normally a challenge for tank-launched ATGMs because of the missile's “dimensional constraints”. However, the MoD added that this has now been “successfully accomplished by the ATGM for Arjun MBT”.

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