New Delhi: Brajesh Mishra, who was National Security Advisor to the Atal Behari Vajpayee government, has rejected a senior scientist’s claim that the country's second nuclear tests in Pokhran in 1998 were only a partial success.
“Dr R Chidambaram, when he reported to me on the second day of the test, said we have done five (tests) and we have met all our parameters and we don’t need to do the sixth one. This is enough for us--it was clear to us that the thermonuclear tests as well as the nuclear tests were successful,” Mishra told CNN-IBN. He was speaking about Dr Chidambaram, Department of Atomic Energy chief during the nuclear tests.
Mishra was reacting to comments made by K Santhanam, a former official with the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). Santhanam, who was a DRDO representative and a director for the 1998 test site preparations, has told a newspaper that the thermonuclear or hydrogen bomb tests--the first and most powerful of the three tests conducted on May 11, 1998--did not produce the desired yield.
The Times of India quoted Santhanam as saying that the three tests were not such a big success as portrayed by the government then.
Santhanam was quoted by the newspaper as saying that the only thermonuclear device tested was a "fizzle." A test is described as a fizzle when it fails to meet the desired yield.
Santhanam told CNN-IBN his comment on the thermo-nuclear device meant that its “yield was lower than what was claimed and indicated a need to refine the designs in order that we have assured performance.”
Union Home Minister P Chidambaram on Thursday said he was "puzzled" over the newspaper report stating that the Pokhran II nuclear test had failed to get the desired yield.
"I have seen the report. I am puzzled. The government will find out, somebody will brief you," Chidambaram told reporters in Delhi after a meeting of the cabinet committee on economic affairs.