The Prime Minister of India – Narendra Modi has said that today, i.e., Wednesday, March 27, 2019, India has shot down a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite, which was a pre-determined target. With this, India has registered itself as a ‘space super power’ with the successful testing of anti-satellite weapon.
The Prime Minister was addressing the nation when he shared the details of India becoming the space super power. Prior to this, he had tweeted, “I would be addressing the nation at around 11:45 AM – 12.00 noon with an important message. Do watch the address on television, radio or social media.”
The shot down, carried out under the aegis of ‘Mission Shakti’, was completed within 3 minutes of its launch. An anti-satellite weapon – A-SAT was used to target the LEO. India is the 4th nation after United States (U.S.), Russia and China to do so.
‘Mission Shakti’ was executed under the able guidance of the scientists of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). The Prime Minister also informed that ‘Mission Shakti’ is an important step in securing India’s safety, economic growth and technological advancement.
He said, “A-SAT missile will give new strength to India’s space programme. I assure the international community that our capability won’t be used against anyone. It is purely India’s defence initiative for its security. We are against arms raised in space. This test does not breach any international law or treaties.”
He also emphasised that this test is not against anyone. India’s mission is to ensure that peace prevails across the world. Also, ‘Mission Shakti’ has not violated any international law.
Speaking on peace, he said, “I would like to reassure the world that our new technique is not against anyone. India has not been against arms race in space and this move has not brought any change to that stand. Our mission is just for the development and security of India. Mission Shakti is an important mission for India’s security.”
Post the Prime Minister’s address, the Congress Party tweeted, “We congratulate @isro & the Govt on the latest achievement for India. The Indian Space Programme established in 1961 by Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru & the Indian Space Research Organisation set up under Smt. Indira Gandhi has always made India proud with its ground breaking achievements.”
The Prime Minister’s address to the nation followed a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security. For the records, the Prime Minister’s address comes ahead of General Elections which will be held in 7 phases from April 11, 2019.