India's Mars Mission 'A Symbolic Coup' Against China: U.S. Media

Washington: India's successful launch of its Mars mission has been described by the mainstream American media as "technological leap" and "a symbolic coup" against China in this field.

"If it succeeds, India's Mars mission would represent a technological leap for the South Asia nation, pushing it ahead of space rivals China and Japan in the field of interplanetary exploration," The Wall Street Journal wrote.

"A successful mission by India's Mars orbiter would make the country the first Asian nation to reach the Red Planet -- and provide a symbolic coup as neighbouring China steps up its ambitions in space," the CNN reported, adding that this has given further credence to claims of an intensifying space race developing in Asia, with potentially dangerous ramifications.

"I believe India's leadership sees China's recent accomplishments in space science as a threat to its status in Asia, and feels the need to respond," Dr James Clay Moltz, professor at the US Naval Postgraduate School, told the CNN.

The satellite launched by ISRO is expected to enter the Mars orbit next September and is at a significantly lower cost than that of other countries like the United States.

The cost of the Mars mission is $73 million, less than a sixth of the amount earmarked for a Mars probe by NASA that will launched later this month.

Source: PTI