This Article is From Feb 16, 2017

'Indians Have Reason To Be Proud': Chinese Media On 104-Satellite Record

'Indians Have Reason To Be Proud': Chinese Media On 104-Satellite Record

India has become the first country to successfully launch 104 satellites in a single rocket.

Beijing: India's space programme offers "food for thought" for other countries on how to achieve space success with small budgets, Chinese official media said today, acknowledging ISRO's world record feat of successfully launching 104 satellites on a single rocket.

"This is perhaps the first widely followed world record India has made in the field of space technology. The Indians have reason to be proud," state-run Global Times said in its editorial.

However the tabloid daily said the significance of the ISRO's new feat is "limited". "However, the space technology race is not mainly about the number of satellites at one go. It's fair to say the significance of this achievement is limited," it said.

The editorial also acknowledged that the new record is a "hard-won achievement for India to reach current space technology level with a relatively small investment". "India launched a lunar probe in 2008 and ranked first among Asian countries by having an unmanned rocket orbit Mars in 2013," it said.

The daily said that India's feat in space technology also offers "many lessons" to other countries. "As a rising power, it has done a good job. It is ambitious but pragmatic, preferring to compare with others as an incentive to progress. India's political and social philosophy is worth pondering," it said.

"Nonetheless, the development of a country's space technology is determined by the size of its input. According to data released by the World Economic Forum in 2016, the US' space budget in 2013 was USD 39.3 billion, China USD 6.1 billion, Russia USD 5.3 billion, Japan USD 3.6 billion and India USD 1.2 billion," it said.

"As India's GDP is about one-fifth to one-fourth that of China's, the share of investment in space technology in India's GDP is similar to that of China's," it argued.

The daily has been carrying critical articles against India. In 2013, it criticised India for sending Mangalyaan to Mars overtaking China despite "millions of poor and illiterate people". 

The article also sought to make out a case that India is spending more on defence than China in terms of GDP ratio. China's last year's budget amounted to USD 146 billion against India's USD 46 billion. "India's defence budget is about one-third of China's, a higher percentage of GDP than that of China," it said.

On Wednesday, India launched 104 satellites on a single rocket from the Sriharikota spaceport, about 125 km from Chennai, in Andhra Pradesh. 

India has become the first country to script history by succeeding in launching the 104 satellites in a single rocket.

(with inputs from PTI)