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India’s ‘Priceless Gift’ : South Asia satellite to be launched

India all set to take a giant leap in space with the launch of South Asia Satellite from Sriharikota today; Described as a ‘gift’ from India to its neighbors, satellite to provide communication, disaster support and connectivity among the countries of South Asia.

Today is a golden day for south asia as the South Asia Satellite would be launched from the Satish Dhawan Spaceport in Sriharikota.

India is embarking on an unprecedented ‘stratospheric diplomacy’ through a special 450 crore rupees gift for South Asians.

The 28-hour countdown for the launch of the South Asia Satellite on-board the rocket GSAT-F09 is going on smoothly at the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota and the regional communication satellite is scheduled to lift off from the national spaceport at 4.57 pm today.

The 12 Ku-band transponders in the geostationary satellite are set to augment the communication infrastructure in the South Asian region barring Pakistan, that did not join the project.

The intended mission life of the satellite is more than 12 years and its weight during lift off is 2230 kilogram.

The estimated cost of the satellite is 235-crore rupees.

India is ready for space diplomacy like never before.New Delhi will ‘gift’ a heavyweight bird in the sky to its neighbours through the ‘South Asia Satellite’.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has described it as India’s “pricelss gift” to its neighbours as part of the sabka saath, sabka vikaas concept.

Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Maldives will be part of the initiative. Afghanistan is expected to join the initiative later.

2230-kg satellite has been fabricated in three years and is purely a communications satellite.

The South Asia Satellite has 12 Ku band transponders which India’s neighbours can utilise to increase communications.

Each country will get access to at least one transponder through which they could beam their own programming. The benefits of this sattlite will be in the areas of mapping of natural resources, tele-medicine, education, IT connectivity and people-to-people links.

The cost associated with the launch will be met by the Government of India. Soon after taking over as the Prime Minister in 2014, Modi had made a unilateral proposal of India launching the satellite whose data would be shared with south asian countries for their development.

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