Prime Minister Narendra Modi today gave a boost to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) after it successfully launched a rocket carrying satellites from Western countries.
"Today's satellites are from developed nations. This is a global endorsement of our space programme," he said from the launch site at ISRO's Sriharikota launch pad off the coast of Andhra Pradesh.
The launch of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) bolsters India's goal of capturing more of the $304-billion annual global space market, and the PM promptly used the occasion to express his satisfaction and make an uplifting speech about India's prowess in cheap space technology.
"This fills every Indian's heart with pride and I can see it reflected in the joy and satisfaction on your faces," he said, adding the fact that India's current Mars mission is costing less than the budget of the Hollywood science fiction film Gravity.
He said he is following the progress of the Mars mission keenly. India's Mars rocket or Mangalyaan is expected to reach the 'Red Planet' on 24 September.
''Earlier India used to buy satellite images from countries like the US and France. Today's launch reinforces India's success in launching satellites for the West; they are also buying remote sensing images from India,'' he added.