India’s Satellite Launch Fails:  Why Do We have Misplaced Concerns?

India’s eight regional satellite failed to launch on Thursday and it is time for the nation to reflect whether we indeed have misplaced priorities as a nation. In a context where natural disasters, political violence, judicial negligence and lack of human dignity define the times what really should the nation focus on?


Rajeev Biswas is a school teacher – based in kolkata.


While a great portion of India’s eastern part remains submerged in the floods India launched its eighth regional satellite on Thursday.

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Satellites or survival: what is our priority at the moment? Image Credit: India Today

India’s attempt to launch the Satellite however has failed to become a success. The satellite that was named as IRNSS-1H failed to launch as it reportedly  didn’t come out of the heat shield as it should have, though the rocket’s lift off was as planned. Confirming the fact that the launch was unsuccessful, ISRO chief A.S. Kiran Kumar said on record that“ There was no problem in any of the stages. But the heat shield has to separate. And once that happens the satellite gets into the orbit. It got separated internally. But it’s enclosed within the heat shield in the fourth stage.”

“We are getting into the details of what has happened,” he added.

The primary purpose behind the IRNSS-1H was to back up and gradually replace the important functions of India’s first navigation satellite. IRNSS-1A was launched four years ago.  It must also be noted that Indian Space Research Organization had to organize to promptly get two back-ups ready when all three rubidium atomic clocks on 1A failed around mid-2016. Mr. Kumar had earlier acknowledged the fact that 1H had atomic clocks that had been corrected and improved to higher standards to avoid future pitfalls. Between the years spanning 2013 and 2016, ISRO had put up seven IRNSS satellites in order to create the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System, since called NavIC or Navigation with Indian Constellation.

NavIC is our own indigenous equivalent of the U.S. Global Positioning System GPS.  India’s attempt at launching a Satellite which could have perhaps proved favorable and a step ahead in India’s technological advancement has indeed failed. The question that we however take time to reflect upon is whether this is really the time to regret the failed launch of a satellite when in this country only recently more than 60 innocent children died in an under equipped hospital, at a time when a monster-god man who raped women endlessly caused violence and curfew in the states of Haryana and Punjab, when India’s eastern parts remain victim to the biggest flood of the decade, when poverty, illiteracy, malnutrition , corruption and communalism define the day to day life of this country? It is the ripe moment to ask ourselves about our national priorities and ask why we prioritize anything above the basic sanctity of human life.  It is indeed an irony that our leaders have failed their people when we pride ourselves in being the world’s greatest democracy-a system that must be accountable to its people. It is a great moment of churning in the nation’s trajectory but its impact will depend on how ready we are to hear these signals.

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