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India To Launch Military Satellites

India plans to launch a series of indigenously built
military satellites with surveillance, imaging and navigation
capabilities to keep a watch on its neighbourhood and help guide cruise
missiles, a top defence scientist said on Saturday.

“There will
be a series of (defence) satellites. I cannot give you the numbers
because they are classified,” V K Saraswat, Scientific Adviser to the
Defence Minister, said here.

“Each year, you will find one or
two satellites going up,” added the Secretary, Defence R & D and
Director General of Defence Research and Development Organisation
(DRDO).

Mostly, these satellites are dedicated to different
defence applications and would have payloads which are for
surveillance, imaging, navigation and communication.

“You should
be able to see with very high resolution and precision the movements of
troops and things like that (in the neighbourhood),” Saraswat said.
“You should be able to see what are the new buildings and new
facilities which have come up”.

India would be able to send data
and commands through these satellites to cruise missiles. “So it will
have tremendous applications”, he said.

These defence satellites
would be indigenously built and launched from home soil only given the
“security sensitivity”, Saraswat stressed.

“The Army, Navy and
Air Force each have their own requirement and it won’t be appropriate
to say how many each of them would need, due to security
considerations,” Saraswat said.

India has taken up development
and launch of these defence satellites under its space-based
surveillance programme, which has a road-map for setting up satellites
for all applications for the Army, Navy and Air Force, he said.

“Now,
this road-map has been given to the Department of Space and the
Department of Space is taking its own schedule for launching these
satellites. We have only one Department of Space and we have huge
requirements…,” he said.

Saraswat said India has already launched some satellites under this programme.