Pokhran Fort in Rajasthan, India
Pokhran Fort in Rajasthan, India
Pokhran is located in Rajasthan
Pokhran is located in India
Coordinates: 26°55′N 71°55′E / 26.92°N 71.92°E / 26.92; 71.92
State India
233 m (764 ft)
 • Total28,457
 • OfficialHindi, Rajasthani
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)

Pokhran is a village and a municipality located, outside of Jaisalmer city in the Jaisalmer district of the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is a remote location in the Thar Desert region and served as the site for India's first underground nuclear weapon test.

Member of the Legislative Assembly is Saleh Mohammad


Surrounded by rocks, sand and five salt ranges, its Hindi name "Pokhran" (पोखरण) means "five salt-ranges". It is located between Jaisalmer and Jodhpur or Bikaner at 27°05′42″N 71°45′11″E / 27.095°N 71.753°E / 27.095; 71.753 and has an average elevation of 233 metres (764 feet).


Fort Pokhran

Fort Pokhran, the 14th century citadel also known as "Balagarh", stands amidst the Thar Desert. This monument is the premier fort of the chief of the Champawats, one of the clan of Rathores of the state of Marwar-Jodhpur. Fort Pokhran is open for visitors and is being currently run as heritage hotel by the royal family of Pokhran.

Sati Mata Memorial

On the outskirts of the town, the Satiyo Deval Sati Mata Memorial, a royal cenotaph, is freely accessible.

The famous, touristic city and fort of Jaisalmer is a couple of hours away by road.

Former rulers


According to 2011 Indian census,[3] Pokhran had a population of 28457. Males constitute 55% of the population and females 45%. Pokhran has an average literacy rate of 56%, lower than the national average of 74.0%: male literacy is 68%, and female literacy is 41%. In Pokhran, 19% of the population is under 6 years of age.

Pokhran Nuclear Test Range

Pokhran Test Range (PTR)
Near Jaisalmer in India
Coordinates27°05′42″N 71°45′11″E / 27.095°N 71.753°E / 27.095; 71.753
TypeNuclear test site
Site information
Operator Indian Army
Site history
In use1970–present
Test information
Subcritical testsnot known
Nuclear tests6

The Pokhran Test Range, a key component of India's nuclear programme, is located in the municipality. The Indian Nuclear Test Site is located 45 km north-west of Pokhran town and 4 km north of Khetolai village.[4] The test range was built by the Indian Army Corps of Engineers and is under the control of Indian Army. It was built sometime before May 1974, when, following authorization given to the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre by then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, it hosted the detonation of India's first nuclear device.


Main article: Smiling Buddha

The Ministry of External Affairs designated the test "Pokhran-I", but it is also known as "Smiling Buddha". It was India's first successful nuclear bomb test on 18 May 1974.[5][6] The bomb was detonated on the army base Pokhran Test Range (PTR), in Rajasthan, by the Indian Army under the supervision of several key Indian generals.


Main article: Pokhran-II

On 11 and 13 May 1998, twenty-four years after Pokhran-I, the Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) conducted five further nuclear tests, dubbed "Pokhran-II", at the Pokhran range. Four AEC devices and, under the codename Shakti, a thermonuclear device were tested.

See also


  1. ^ Soszynski, Henry. "Pokhran (thikana) Genealogy". Archived from the original on 22 December 2015. Retrieved 24 June 2014.
  2. ^ "Members Bioprofile: First Lok Sabha". Lok Sabha website. Archived from the original on 24 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014.
  3. ^ "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 16 June 2004. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
  4. ^ Forty years after Pokhran nuclear tests, villagers complain of frequent cancer deaths, Scroll.in, 18 May 2014
  5. ^ FIles. "1974 Nuclear files". Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. Nuclear files archives. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
  6. ^ "Smiling Buddha, 1974". India's Nuclear Weapons Program. Nuclear Weapon Archive.