Pakistan surspasses India's nuke count: report

Published: March 10, 2015
According to new infographic unveiled by Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, the country had a total of 120 atomic weapons. PHOTO COURTESY: THE GUARDIAN

According to new infographic unveiled by Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, the country had a total of 120 atomic weapons. PHOTO COURTESY: THE GUARDIAN

WASHINGTON: Pakistan had at least ten more atomic weapons than India in its nuclear arsenal in 2013, The Times of India reported on Tuesday.

According to a new infographic unveiled by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Pakistan had a total of 120 atomic weapons last year.

Founded by the University of Chicago scientists in 1945, the infographic tracks the number and history of nuclear weapons in the nine nuclear weapon states.

The Nuclear Notebook Interactive Infographic provides a visual representation of the Bulletin’s famed Nuclear Notebook, which since 1987 has tracked the number and type of the world’s nuclear arsenals.

Having reached a peak of over 65,000 in the late 1980s, the number of nuclear warheads has dropped significantly to a little over 10,000, but more countries now possess them, it shows.

According to the infographic, the United States and Russia both have about 5,000 weapons each.

France has 300, China 250, the United Kingdom 225 and Israel 80. North Korea has only conducted nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and 2013.

“I don’t think people truly understand just how many of these weapons there are in the world,” said Rachel Bronson, executive director of the Bulletin.

“The Interactive is a way to see, immediately, who has nuclear weapons and when they got them, and how those numbers relate to each other. It is a startling experience, looking at those comparisons.”

The authors of the Nuclear Notebook are Hans M Kristensen and Robert S. Norris, both with the Federation of American Scientists.

In the most recent edition of the Nuclear Notebook, the authors discuss the Notebook’s 28 year history and describe how sometimes host countries learned of foreign nuclear weapons on their soil from the Nuclear Notebook.

Over 28 years of weapons analysis, the Nuclear Notebook column has revealed surprise nuclear activity and spot-on arsenal estimates while becoming a daily resource for scholars, activists and journalists.

“We wanted a way to communicate those numbers visually, because the world we live may be data-driven, it’s also visual,” said John Mecklin, editor of the Bulletin.

“The new infographic makes this vital information even more accessible.”

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Reader Comments (31)

  • Human
    Mar 10, 2015 - 1:57PM


  • AK47
    Mar 10, 2015 - 2:10PM

    What a waste of tax payer’s money.Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Mar 10, 2015 - 2:15PM

    Well done. our nuclear arsenal will always keep India’s adventurism and jingoism in check. All they could do now is make ‘mauka mauka’ ads Recommend

  • ajeet
    Mar 10, 2015 - 2:56PM

    Now the visit to Saudi Arabia falls in place.Recommend

  • Feroz
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:01PM

    When the Soviet Union collapsed it had thousands of Nuclear Weapons. If I start collecting Guns and cannot feed my family they will die. When that happens who is left to be protected with the Guns possessed ?Recommend

  • Ahmad
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:11PM

    Pakistan has been ahead of India in Nuke counts for years, this is old news.Recommend

  • Masror Alam
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:13PM

    Congratulations Pakistan, now not a single adversary is in a position to dictate us by force or coercion. We are proud of our scientists. Recommend

  • Sabyasachi
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:13PM

    So what?Couldn’t care less!Recommend

  • Pity
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:15PM

    Say this again when war is initiated against us by our neighbors.Recommend

  • mauka seizer
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:25PM

    keep making “mauka mauka” ads and we will keep making our defense strong!!! Pakistan zindabadRecommend

  • Alfa Romeo
    Mar 10, 2015 - 3:39PM

    What kind of stupidity is this? The Nukes of Present day are 10000 times more powerful. Whether India or Pakistan or any other country that has nukes can destroy with just 1 bomb and the imminent impact will last a few Generations with Climate Change and Radiation impact. The Risk of safekeeping of Nukes itself is very very high. India and Pakistan should curtail the number of Nukes to 5 or 6 which itself is quite high.

  • JD
    Mar 10, 2015 - 5:20PM

    There is not one single man (or woman for that sake) in this entire world who knows all the locations of the Pakistani nuclear sites, let alone the number of warheads. How do they reach such conclusions?Recommend

  • Syed Hammad Rizvi
    Mar 10, 2015 - 6:54PM

    “You keep a pistol with 6 bullets with you all the time, if you are sure that you can defend yourself from your enemy with these 6 bullets, or you keep more bullets in spare, depending how mightier, cruel or dangerous your enemy is.

    This justifies why Pakistan is winning the race and they should keep on winning it for their existence on the map. There is no need of comparing it with india.”Recommend

  • Alam Daar
    Mar 10, 2015 - 7:03PM

    I wonder how Pakistan has surpassed India in weapons buildup. BJP’s maiden budget has boosted defense budget to 12 percent that makes $38.35 billion (2.29 trillion Indian rupees). This huge sum makes 50 Billion rupees more than what the previous government presented in an interim budget earlier. This major hike in defense sector will enable Indian military to pursue its long-ambitious procurement deals of Rafale fighter-bombers, submarines, ultra-light howitzer, Javelin anti-tank guided missile and night vision equipment. Besides that New Delhi has been tremendously increasing fissile material (Plutonium and Uranium) stockpiles that will empower India to build more nuclear devices in near future. It has also been aspiring to get sophisticated space technology from both United States and Israel to develop Ballistic Missile Defense Shield that will enable India to intercept missile before it hits the target. But still Pakistan has been blamed without justification. Recommend

  • Sean
    Mar 10, 2015 - 7:58PM

    Ridiculous report! How can one ignore the Indian stockpile of more than 1000 kilotons? Indian step to construct the largest Uranium Enrichment Plant covertly in Chitradurga district will have both civilian and military uses, clearly shows the Indian intentions for nuclear proliferation and the use of nuclear technology. Already Indian missiles are easily available in black market via South Korea, now Indian made nuclear warheads will also be available to promote nuclear terrorism.Recommend

  • Rajwana
    Mar 10, 2015 - 8:23PM

    India is dragging Pakistan into a nuclear arms race. India is on offence when it comes to nuclear capability. India is rushing to sign nuclear deals with almost dozen states. India is pursuing missile defense. India is modernizing its nuclear navy. Pakistan is just focusing to counter Indian nuclear superiority qualitatively, not quantitatively. these reports are merely speculations.. Recommend

  • zara haq
    Mar 10, 2015 - 9:17PM

    @Alam Daar:
    Now et plz allow this. Let me add a little more to detail.
    India’s daily cost of siachen troops PER DAY are 20million us dollar, as the suit each trooper wears costs 5000us dollars.
    Then when you do gdp, you take government defense expenditure,including salaries ,equipment made and purchased within the country and etc. But doesn’t include defense imports.
    Total exports ( all types of export,food,manufacturing,defense) subtract imports ( again defense and all types of imports) and sum is added to gdp sum.
    So the gdp does exclude all imports, but it doesn’t tell exact defense spending . As in i am spending 20bn dollars on total defense including expenses incurring at home, buying new defense equipment manufactured at home but this defense sum in gdp doesn’t tell how much exactly has been spent on defense imports. So my defense imports could be 70 billion dollars but gdp won’t tell and include that.
    I believe all countries’ actual defense budget are always hidden.

    Uff may thak gayi likh kay.

    Pakistan should never give up developing defense technology because when you have a neighbour who is eyeing your coasts and expanding submarines fleet for that under the misleading guise of countering china pearl strategy, which sure indi wants t counter but her other designs are not so covert either , you need to be vigilant.
    Yey bhi aik musibat hee haiRecommend

  • Asok
    Mar 11, 2015 - 12:01AM

    Congratulations. You win. Can we stop the race now?Recommend

  • Asok
    Mar 11, 2015 - 12:01AM

    Congratulations. You win. Can we stop the race now?Recommend

  • someone
    Mar 11, 2015 - 1:58AM

    @Masror Alam:
    Big words for a country that can’t even stop drone attacks on its civilian. How do you find courage to say those words? Amnesia?Recommend

  • abhi
    Mar 11, 2015 - 4:06AM

    I am amused to see the mention of Mauka Mauka ad here. Did you guys really got hurt so much that you started creating more nukes?Recommend

  • JSM
    Mar 11, 2015 - 7:08AM

    India is 7 times the size of Pakistan. So Pakistan needs 7 times the number of weapons India has to have destruction parity with India and delivery systems also. 120 is not enough.Recommend

  • Peace Maker
    Mar 11, 2015 - 7:49AM

    All these guesstimates are geopolitically motivated and erroneous. India has third largest stockpile of plutonium in the world if their weapons and reactor-grade stocks are combined. So is true for HEU. One has to do a small bit of independent number crunching on International Panel for Fissile Material Reports to bust the myth of these stories tellers. Although, even IPFM perhaps fudges the data and calculation parameters too.
    Look at the Indian reactors outside IAEA safeguards and their huge stockpile of missiles and one can join the dots to make out: India is the fastest growing arsenal possessor, not Pakistan.
    They want to tell us that nuclear weapons are good for everyone else except Pakistan!

    Its like saying please don’t defend yourself because India is our market and wants to beat you. Recommend

  • zara
    Mar 11, 2015 - 7:50AM

    Lolz. Yes the mauka mauka ad released in feb 2015 and right then we concieved, planned and started building shaheen 3. And now we launched. a cheesy tasteless indian ad was sucha motivator.
    Btw do you indians remember ‘anay do pakistan ko’ Ad you made. Lolz and aftermath.

    @Alam daar, if you read my prev comment do tell me where i am wrong.Recommend

  • Anon
    Mar 11, 2015 - 8:35AM

    India needs 10 bombs to destroy full Pakistan, Pakistan and China need around 30 bombs to destroy full India. And India needs 90 bombs to destroy China. So total India need 100 bombs for China+Pakistan. So don’t worry, we all three countries have enough to get destroyed together case Pakistan and China need a change… . Recommend

  • Lailomah
    Mar 11, 2015 - 10:55AM

    Once again international community has come up with one more tool of propaganda for defaming Pakistan as a responsible nuclear state. It would be better to turn back the pages of history that would be enough to make it clear to international community that who actually started and is continuously involved in destabilizing the regional peace and strategic environment. Pakistan’s nuclear capability is for deterrence purpose whether it is 10 numbers more or less in number it is for deterrence purpose. Because India under the cover of conventional superiority is trying to engage Pakistan in conflicts and tensions. In order to counter the India’s conventional superiority and to maintain its credible deterrence against any foreign aggression Pakistan is being compelled to depend on nuclear weapons for its defense. Recommend

  • yo2da2
    Mar 11, 2015 - 11:37AM

    @Ahmed: Yaaaayyyyy! We are Number one! Recommend

  • Tania
    Mar 11, 2015 - 12:40PM

    Once again Pakistan nuclear weapon status has come under the limelight. This is actually a habit of international community to always question nuclear credential of Pakistan. In fact it is India not Pakistan who emphasizes a lot on nukes number. The Government of Pakistan categorically indicated this that they are not at all in favor or involve in any kind of an arms race in the region. The calculations which have been come forward are much ironic in nature as it is India which possesses the huge amount of defence budget. Pakistan strictly adheres to the credible minimum deterrence policy. It also emphasizes a lot on nuclear deterrence environment in the region. Recommend

  • Mirza
    Mar 11, 2015 - 7:57PM

    So what if we don’t have clean water, electricity, healthcare, jobs, nutrition, education, vaccination and freedom to practice our religion. We do have nuclear weapons, Polio, measles, vulnerable citizens, terrorism, fanaticism, and abject poverty. We would continue eating grass while funding the perks of a million man army. Not just we are ahead of India in this regards, no European country or Japan could boast of having such a huge army in addition to nuclear weapons! Recommend

  • Shakil
    Mar 12, 2015 - 1:59PM

    Simple logic, Pakistan need more as their target(India) is bigger. Its interesting world is focusing more on India and Pakistan without mentioning Israel at all, it may have more than Indian and Pakistani nuces combined together!Recommend

  • Shahid
    Mar 12, 2015 - 11:29PM

    Old news, Times of India has just tried to defame Pakistan which our media never does. Pakistani media should come forward with the factual information about covert Indian nuclear weapons program expansion as well to let others understand the reality well. Indian fissile material stockpile is more than 1000 kilo tons that can be anytime converted in nuclear warheads. So technically India’s nuclear program is a global threat instead Pakistan has declared its program just for security and deterrence.Recommend

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