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India launches its first navigation satellite


19:52, July 02, 2013

NEW DELHI, July 2 (Xinhua) -- India has successfully launched its first indigenous navigation satellite on Monday from Sriharikota spaceport in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

The satellite, Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System ( IRNSS-1A), was launched at 11.41 p.m. (local time) Monday using the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle-C22, said the state-owned Indian Space Research Organisation which created the satellite.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has hailed the launch, describing it as an "important milestone" in the country's "space programme".

"India's space programme is playing an increasingly important role in socio-economic development of the country," Singh said.

In fact, IRNSS-1A is the first of the seven satellites planned under the Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System which is similar to the global positioning system of the United States.

The satellite intends to provide accurate position information service to users within the country and up to 1,500 km from the country's boundaries. It may also be used for defence purposes.

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