Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh hints at changing ‘no first use nuclear policy’
NEW DELHI (92 News) – In a provocative message amid the rising tension between Pakistan and India over the Kashmir issue, Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh has hinted at changing the ‘no first use nuclear policy’.
He said: “Till today, our nuclear policy is ‘No First Use’. What happens in future depends on the circumstances,” media reports said, quoting the minister.
Analysts opine that Rajanath’s statement has proved that Kashmir is nuclear flashpoint. “Rajnath’s statement reflects a very dangerous extremist thought as well it is a signal to a nuclear war,” they said.
Rajnath Singh made the comment as he visited Pokhran on the first death anniversary of former prime minister Atal Bahari Vajpayee. It was during Vajpayee’s tenure as prime minister when India conducted five nuclear tests in 1998.
In a tit-for-tat response, Pakistan conducted six tests to become a nuclear test. India had introduced its nuclear doctrine in 1999 in which it had declared a ‘no first use policy’ i.e. it would not be the first to launch a nuclear weapon but retained the right to retaliate in response to an atomic strike.