Pokhran-II 

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IR and Diplomacy  ->  Indian Diplomacy

Topic :  GS Paper 2 - Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests

The second Pokhran Nuclear Test was conducted after Smiling Buddha in 1974.

Twenty years ago, on 11 May, 1998, India created history by conducting its second set of nuclear tests – Operation Shakti – in the Indian Army’s Pokhran Test Range. India test fired three nuclear bombs — Shakti I, Shakti II, Shakti III on that day. Two days later, on 13 May, 1998 two other nuclear bombs — Shakti IV and Shakti V were detonated.

  •        India was not a signatory to Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) or the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Sanctions after Nuclear test:

  •        Newer sanctions were imposed by USA and European Union.
  •        USA demanded five benchmarks as non-proliferation goals to normalise relations:

o   Signing the CTBT

o   Halting production of fissile material

o   Strategic restraint

o   Strengthening export control regimes

o   Normalisation of relations with Pakistan

These were strongly rejected by India.

India’s Stand on Sanctions

  •        India refused to sign the CTBT, but declared a moratorium on testing
  •        Agreed to join the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty negotiations without halting fissile material production
  •        Reaffirmed minimum deterrent without giving any number of warheads
  •        Agreed to strengthen export controls.
  •        Additionally, India declared no-first-use and commitment to disarmament.

Nuclear Doctrine of India

Two key features of India’s nuclear doctrine are:

  •        A posture of "No First Use": nuclear weapons will only be used in retaliation against a nuclear attack on Indian Territory or on Indian forces anywhere; and
  •        Nuclear retaliation to a first strike will be massive and designed to inflict unacceptable damage.