Sriharikota: The South Asia Satellite was on Friday launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation.
The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle GSLV F-09 carrying the communication and broadcasting satellite took from the second launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota at 4.57 pm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his recent radio address to the nation 'Mann Ki Baat' has said the South Asia Satellite is India's gift to the region, that will go a long way in addressing the economic and development priorities of the nations in the region.
Six of India's neighbours including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Srilanka and the Maldives are participating in the space-based regional communication project.
The satellite weighing 2230 kilogram during lift off and carrying 12 Ku-Band transponders has been developed at a cost of about 235-crore rupees and the total cost of the project including the launch is worked out to be about 450-crore rupees.
The intended operational life of the satellite is more than 12 years and it cost Rs 235 crore.
The GSAT-9 is a Geostationary Communication Satellite and data from it will be shared with the other five countries.
It will help to meet the growing telecommunications and broadcasting needs of the region.
All participating nations will have access to at least one transponder using which they can telecast their own programming.
The satellite is expected to provide communication channels between countries for better disaster management as the region is prone to natural disasters.
The national space agency ISRO uses the indigenous Cryogenic Upper Stage in this flight of the GSLV for the fourth time. In total, it would be the 11th flight of the GSLV.
In short, as envisaged by Prime Minister Modi, it is a satellite sans frontiers, for the nations to grow together.