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Indian Prime Minister Wants a Satellite ‘Gifted’ to South Asian Nations

July 1, 2014 (EIRNS)—Following India’s successful launch, yesterday, of its Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed to that nation’s space community that India give a "gift" of a satellite to the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation. SAARC was founded in 1985, by India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, and Afghanistan joined in 2007. Such an orbital space asset, he said, would help fight against poverty and illiteracy, present a challenge to progress in science, and provide opportunities for the youth. Modi mentioned that telemedicine benefits are currently available to Afghanistan and African countries through Indian communication satellites, but "this heart wants more," he said.

The successful launch of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle put five foreign satellites into orbit yesterday. A full-sized French remote sensing satellite was aboard, as well as four small satellites, from Canada and Singapore.