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Can NASR Missile really put ‘Cold Water on Cold Start’ as claimed by Bajwa

Pakistan has developed NASR missile to thwart India from launching military offensive which is sometimes referred to as the Cold Start Doctrine (CSD). Cold Start doctrine is said to be an offensive plan of the Indian forces intended to quickly mobilise forces and subdue Pakistan before it even considers nuclear retaliation.

Pakistan knows it very well that it cannot match India in conventional warfare and to counter this it has developed tactical nuclear weapons. Pakistan claims that NASR can carry nuclear warheads of low yield with high accuracy. It is not like those long range nuclear warhead carrying ballistic missiles which are fired thousands of kilometres away with pre-designated target and carry massive warheads. Tactical nuclear weapons are for battlefield situation mainly aimed at thwarting incoming forces which are already at the borders and pushing to enter the enemy territory.

In 2018, Pakistan Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa had made a strange remark. He said, "Nasr has put cold water on cold start".

Reports say that Indian forces have been carrying out military exercise simulating fighting war under a Nuclear environment to provide additional counter battlefield weapon to Nasr. India has developed QR-SAMs which can provide sufficient battle field air defence. It will be mobile and will move with the Strike Corps to give level of layered aerial defence against SRBM like Nasr .

QRSAM or Quick Reaction Surface-to-Air Missile is a missile developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in association with Bharat Electronics Limited and Bharat Dynamics Limited for the Indian Army. The missile is all-weather, all-terrain missile with electronic counter measures against jamming by aircraft radars.The missile can be mounted on a truck and is stored in a canister. QRSAM uses solid-fuel propellant and has a range of 25-30 km.

Pakistan also fears that India might also put together Cruise Missile Defence System (CMDS) which along with QR-SAM will provide India's Strike Corps a layered battlefield Aerial Defence systems against cruise missiles like Babur, Raad and Nasr SRBMs. QRSAM Air Defence System is a critical component in India's "Cold Start" Doctrine.


What Pakistan should be wary of?

What Pakistan must keep in mind is that India has fairly developed secondary strike capability. India has ballistic missiles with nuclear warhead that can be launched from submarines in short notice. Pakistan can rest assured that any use of nukes- tactical or strategic - the retribution will be swift, severe and devastating threatening its very existence.

A tactic that India can use is to get closer to populated areas in Pakistan which would force Islamabad to think of collateral damage if a nuke device is used in its own territory. Indian Army can use this tactic to negate Pakistani nukes by inserting divisons in densely populated Pakistani regions like Punjab. If Pakistan resorts to battlefield nukes then it would effectively endanger its own population also making Pakistan lose its status and face in international society and will create a soft spot for India.

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