Islamabad: Pakistan has 150-160 nuclear warheads compared to India’s 130-140 warheads, according to a 2019 report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).
They are comparable in the sense that both have the capability to strike each other’s territories and cause immense damage and massive loss of life.
Pakistan has longer-range nuclear weapons, such as the Shaheen 3 missile that can reach India’s Andaman Islands near Southeast Asia. India is developing long-range ballistic missiles able to strike targets across China.
India’s nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine “INS Arihant” became operational last year, giving the country a “nuclear triad” – the ability to launch nuclear strikes by land, air and sea.
Pakistan is also working on sea-launched cruise missiles to complete its own triad.
China, India and Pakistan are increasing the size of their nuclear arsenals.
SIPRI Governing Board Chair Ambassador Jan Eliasson, former Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, says: “A key finding is that despite an overall decrease in the number of nuclear warheads in 2018, all nuclear weapon-possessing states continue to modernise their nuclear arsenals.”
At the start of 2019, nine states—the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) — possessed approximately 13,865 nuclear weapons.
This marked a decrease from the approximately 14,465 nuclear weapons that SIPRI estimated these states possessed at the beginning of 2018.
Of these 13,865 nuclear weapons, 3,750 are deployed with operational forces and nearly 2,000 of these are kept in a state of high operational alert.
The decrease in the overall number of nuclear weapons in the world is mainly due to Russia and the US — which together still account for over 90 per cent of all nuclear weapons — further reducing their strategic nuclear forces pursuant to the implementation of the 2010 Treaty on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START) while also making unilateral reductions.
In 2018, Russia and the US announced that they had achieved the final New START force reduction limits by the specified deadline....