The GSAT 9 ‘South Asia’ Satellite meant as a gift from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the neighbouring nations of India has taken off from Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh at 4:57 pm today. The satellite, meant for boosting communication network in the South Asian peninsula, was launched using a GSLV F-09 Rocket by the Indian Space Research Organisation today.
The mission, which is expected to last for the next 12 years, is completely funded by India at a total expense Rs 235 Crore.
Previously, the Geostationary Communication Satellite was aimed at helping all the SAARC nations gain increased communication in the region. However, Afghanistan and Pakistan pulled out of the mission and hence, the satellite will now serve 5 countries in South Asia, namely Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Maldives and Sri Lanka. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also put out a tweet congratulating all south asian countries.
He also praised the ISRO scientists for achieving this remarkable feat.
The lift-off mass is around 2,230 Kg, including both the launch vehicle and the satellite.