Kabul Seeks Exclusive Satel­lite from In­dia

The Economic Times - - Pure Politics - Di­pan­janRoy.Chaud­hury @times­group.com

New Delhi: The Afghanistan gov­ern­ment has re­quested In­dia to launch a spe­cial satel­lite ex­clu­sively for its use, three months af­ter In­dia launched the South Asian Satel­lite.The Afghan Min­istry of Telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions and Tech­nol­ogy re­cently made such a re­quest to the In­dian gov­ern­ment, of­fi­cials in the Afghan gov­ern­ment told ET.

Afghanistan min­is­ter Syed Ah­mad Shah Sa­dat re­cently met In­dian Am­bas­sador Man­preet Vohra in Kabul to make the re­quest. It is not yet clear if Kabul wants to use a ded­i­cated satel­lite to track ter­ror­ist hide­outs. The min­is­ter and the In­dian en­voy dis­cussed open­ing of a terminal for Afghanistan in the South Asia Satel­lite, an­other spe­cial satel­lite and In­dia-as­sisted small devel­op­ment projects. A MoU would be signed soon to let Afghanistan ben­e­fit from South Asia Satel­lite. Two of the 12 transpon­ders will be pro­vided to Afghanistan and the satel­lite will be used in ar­eas of telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, tele­vi­sion ser­vices, agri­cul­ture, mines and other sec­tors. A spe­cial satel­lite sta­tion in Kabul is also un­der con­struc­tion.

In May this year, Afghan Pres­i­dent Ashraf Ghani had joined other South Asian lead­ers in wel­com­ing the launch of a South Asian Satel­lite by In­dia for South Asian na­tions, call­ing it a ma­jor step in re­gional co­op­er­a­tion.

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