Youm-e-Takbeer, the celebration of Pakistan’s atomic explosions in 1998, is being observed today across country with national zeal and fervour. Pakistan, on May 28, 1998, Pakistan joined the prestigious club of seven nuclear powers, by conducting nuclear tests in response to India’s initiative of testing nukes on May 11 and 13, the same year and month.
Indeed May 28, 1998 was a Red Letter Day for Pakistan, because on this day, at 3:16 pm it crossed the nuclear threshold becoming the world’s 7th nuclear power and the first nuclear weapons state in the Islamic World.
Then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif very often found giving credit to India sarcastically that if India would not have done atomic explosion perhaps Pakistan’s nukes would have remained in the closet. Indians tested their nuclear devices first on May 11, 1998 and then in a fit of euphoria assumed that Pakistan did not possess the bomb hence taunted it with jingoistic saber-rattling, thus forcing its hand.
During the 17 days following the Indian tests, The US President Bill Clinton tried his best to deter Pakistan from conducting the tests, offering incentives as well as threats.
But Pakistan took the decisive decision to respond India and tested nukes. Pakistan’s scientists and defence planners must be credited that in spite of India’s head start; they caught up and perhaps surpassed it in developing nukes. Successful atomic explosions provided balance of power in the region and forced then Indian Prime Minister to come on table for negotiations.
Some anti-Pakistan elements have been involved in conspiracies against the atomic bomb of Pakistan. One of the propaganda was to make the world realize that militants in the country can take over Pakistani nukes that could be very harmful for rest of the world.
Pakistan’s Nuclear Command Authority through its Strategic Plans Division, undertakes measures for the safety and security of strategic assets. It has been assured that safety of the nukes is the top most priority and they are in safe hands.