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Ravi Karumanchiri
(Creative & Analytical)+(Affable & Intense)+(Intellectual & Intuitive)=Personable, Professional, Paradoxical
(Creative & Analytical)+(Affable & Intense)+(Intellectual & Intuitive)=Personable, Professional, Paradoxical

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This is the world's first peak at India's long-range SLBM (submarine-launched ballistic missile); in its **hoisting rig**; undergoing final pressure tests prior to loading onto the INS Arihant (as evidenced by the neatly arrayed tie-down straps on the left, and the Arihant is the only guess). Please don't anyone try to tell me that all of that heavy-gauge structural steel is to keep that Keralite upright on his ladder! (The hoisting rig gets lowered into the sub along with the already loaded cannister, and then it gets disassembled and lifted out, leaving the loaded cannister in the sub. The hoisting rig is a dead-giveaway: This can only be a picture of a canisterized SLBM in a hoisting rig)

Some have tried to dismiss this photo as being the top stage of an upcoming ISRO satellite launch vehicle; but this is at a different facility, without orange gang-planks along the walls. This pic shows a facility that is at ground level (with a sectional, movable floor -- not a raisable floor), and with only one set of doors (not six, like the ISRO facility people know). Look at the surface of the cannister, with taped-on sensors; that "nose cone" (as some have called it) has a seam right through the middle of it (!); and warning stickers on top (?); with pop-rivet construction?????? Such construction was never meant to fly on a missile; it barely worked for biplanes!

Now take a close look at this room (more likely a shed with moist air that supports some mildew on the walls), and you will see some natural light coming-through those two windows with horizontal, venetian blinds on them. (This photo, with the stained floor and mildewy walls, this photo screams 'NAVAL FACILITY'.)

My guess is that the decision was made, after the Arihant set sail, to release this pic. I would further guess that the Arihant has one such **loaded** cannister that contains nothing but dummy warheads, for an upcoming sea-borne test of DRDO's hush-hush LR-SLBM; AND also onboard the Arihant are identical copies of the test missile, but tipped with real-deal nukes (likely MaRVs).

After the test, if all goes well, India will formally announce the establishment of the third leg of its CMD nuclear triad. Of course, the decision to test is partially a political one, at this point, and so all bets are off as to when this system will be tested. However, the message is clear -- something has already been deployed, most logically a test missile and a set of identical missiles with operational loads (most likely, all nuclear).

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