India Mars Mission to Launch Amidst Overwhelming Poverty

India Mars mission to launch amidst overwhelming poverty

With India’s heavily publicized Mars mission slated for a Tuesday launch, many see the momentous occasion as the country’s attempt to vie for technological supremacy against the Chinese. The situation almost seems reminiscent of the uncompromising space race fought between the United States and Russia, which commenced during the mid-20th century.

However, in a time when many Indian citizens are struggling to survive, amidst overwhelming poverty and an ailing economy, the event has sparked considerable controversy.

The Mars Orbiter Mission

The Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), also unofficially called Mangalyaan, is all set for its much-anticipated launch on Nov. 5, 2013, at 2:38 p.m. The mission was previously due for launch during late October. Alas, the date was pushed back to early November, as a result of a delay in one of the ships that was transporting radars to the South Pacific, deemed

Mars Orbiter Mission Stages and Info
The stages planned by the Indian Space Research Organization for its upcoming Mars Orbiter Mission.

critical to the mission’s success.

The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has previously described their attempts as a technology demonstrator, with the primary ambition involving the design, planning and management of an interplanetary mission.

The Indian government gave the mission the go-ahead on Aug. 3, 2012, with the announcement made by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, during his annual address from a 17th-century fort complex in Delhi, called Red Fort.

The space agency started with both technological and scientific objectives. In terms of technological innovation, they aimed to manufacture and launch a Mars orbiter that was capable of withstanding Earth bound maneuvers, as well as the length of time required to reach the Red Planet – some 300 days.

Chairman of ISRO K. Radhakrishnan claims that mankind has much to learn about the universe and our solar system. He briefly ruminates over some of the opportunities of the imminent mission:

“We want to use the first opportunity to put a spacecraft and orbit it around Mars and, once it is there safely, then conduct a few meaningful experiments and energize the scientific community.”

Specifically, the scientific research goals are aimed at exploring Martian surface features, including the planet’s morphology and mineralogy, alongside its atmosphere. The orbiter encompasses a number of scientific research instruments, including a Mars color camera and a thermal infrared imaging spectrometer for investigation of the planet’s surface. Meanwhile, a mass analyzer will perform particle environment studies, while photometers and methane sensors will explore its atmosphere.

Although the mission is chiefly designed as a technology demonstrator, ISRO will use its solar-powered instruments to determine precisely how the weather systems of Mars work, and could even yield small insight into how most of the planet’s water disappeared.

The Mars Orbiter Mission probe will lift-off from the First Launch Pad in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh, aboard a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) rocket. The probe will not be dispatched directly to Mars, however. Instead, ISRO plans to send it into orbit around the Earth, use its resulting momentum to perform an intricate series of manoeuvres and then slingshot the satellite into Mars orbit.

Mars Orbiter Mission Instruments

If successful, ISRO would become the fourth organization to successfully reach Mars, after the European Space Agency, the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and NASA.

The Poverty Conundrum

Many in the country have objected to vast sums of government money being funnelled into the high-profile project, during a time when much of the country is feeling the biting affects of the global recession. With a faltering economy, and the Indian administration unable to provide its citizens with rudimentary services, many within the beleaguered population are calling into question their leadership’s motives.

A 2013 report, spearheaded by the United Nations, concluded that a third of the world’s poorest people dwell in India. According to a study, entitled The State of the Poor: Where are the Poor and Where are the Poorest?, the country remains a ticking time bomb. With the population destined to reach 1.5 billion by 2026, 20 million new jobs are required each year to prevent the country’s poverty from worsening; however, the Indian economy is not expanding fast enough to compensate for the population boom.

A poor health service, ever-increasing child malnutrition, and limited education and training services, compound unemployment and economic growth.

The Indian government’s actions has sparked international outrage from critics of America and Britain’s aid programs. With both countries providing India with yearly aid, some see the country’s latest space endeavours as an irresponsible and profligate act, merely designed to showcase the developing country’s superpower status.

Regardless of the country’s overwhelming poverty, the Indian space agency’s Mars mission remains set for a Tuesday launch.

By James Fenner

Indian Space Research Organization

The Economic Times

The Times of India

Washington Post

Indian Space Projects

The Telegraph

149 Responses to "India Mars Mission to Launch Amidst Overwhelming Poverty"

  1. Deepak   January 21, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    My dream India rules uk fo 300 yrs and torture them twice/thrice what they did to Indians.

  2. Deepak   January 21, 2014 at 9:36 pm

    my dream for the people like James Fenner India ruling UK for 300 years. And torturing them twice/trice what they did to Indians.

  3. Rahul   January 12, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    only a retard can write a heading such as this 🙂 🙂

  4. Nikhil Patil   November 30, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    This goes to Mr James Fenner. Please read this careully.

    What a refreshing headline! Not even poverty. It has to be “overwhelming poverty”. Who are we to launch into space? Should we not ask our British colonial masters before doing anything?

    Apparently the other countries engaging in scientific research face no poverty. Apparently, space has something to do with poverty. Apparently, it is between funding Isro and solving poverty. You cannot do both. No sir, no. Next time, when you write about something that Britain did well, sure to remember to randomly incorporate the poverty of Birmingham and the riots of London into the title.

    “England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty”
    “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”
    “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

  5. nikhil233ikhi   November 30, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    This goes to Mr James Fenner and Guradian Editors. Please read this carefully.

    What a refreshing headline! Not even poverty. It has to be “overwhelming poverty”.
    Who are we to launch into space? Should we not ask our British colonial masters before doing anything?

    Apparently the other countries engaging in scientific research face no poverty. Apparently, space has something to do with poverty. Apparently, it is between funding IISRO and solving poverty. You cannot do both. No sir, no. Next time, when you write about something that Britain did well, sure to remember to randomly incorporate the poverty of Birmingham and the riots of London into the title.

    “England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty”
    “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”
    “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

  6. jv73   November 25, 2013 at 9:11 pm

    Yes I agree that most of Indians per capita income is very less they may not afford proper food all the times but as a nation we will overcome it soon, but that is not in the cost of getting rid of all other activities. We will explore even pluto and do farming in mars to eradicate our poverty.

  7. Jyothis   November 25, 2013 at 4:14 am

    India is a large country, with each of sector working in different efficiency. Even each state is different from the other, with diversified culture and standard of living, so u can’t just say that India as a whole is not healthy and stable. As the nation becomes bigger, it becomes much more difficult to see changes easily in a fast rate. Please guys when will you learn to appreciate the achievements. And there is nothing like shortage of jobs in India as long as I feel, if someone is ready to do any job, he will get one for sure.

    We have a legacy of astronomy, even before NASA, even most of these developed nations here were born. So we have more right to do it than anyone else.

    About the cost of this mission, it comes to around 4.5 Billion INR, we have a population of 1.237 billion and we don’t think its such a huge amount. We just don’t mind giving 4.5 INR each from our tax money for this mission, so why should other’s be so bothered about it ?

  8. Raymont   November 20, 2013 at 3:37 am

    My comment was not shown

  9. Raymont   November 20, 2013 at 3:18 am

    Your headlines doesn’t even makes sense. Next time NASA launches a mission, write an article with the headlines ‘NASA launch successful amidst overwhelming national debt’. Are you iodine deficient, you half-witted moron?

  10. Havu   November 18, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Dumb stupid & idiot .. (few more times) author. Here are some more titles you may want to write about:

    Queen of England wears a diamond throne amidst slightly less overwhelming poverty on London streets.. should she give it up..

    Royal wedding celebrated with huge expenditure amidst ove….

  11. Brigesh   November 18, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    really!!
    Britain should stop wasting money on programs like Top Gear wasting millions of pounds while the poor in England http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/aug/24/child-poverty-social-apartheid-ncb are not able to get the basic needs met, same goes to all the billions in weapons research they spend every year.

  12. roy   November 17, 2013 at 8:54 pm

    What an envious moron. Can’t seem to handle India’s space successes! Get a life!!

  13. Rameez   November 15, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    This article is in-complete and takes a one-sided view on the subject. Even in doing so, the author doesn’t convincingly put the point either !

  14. Privendra Singh   November 15, 2013 at 9:04 am

    For the critics of the British aid program- Please consider the 300mn as a rent for staying in our country for 200 years.

  15. Jatin Bhatt   November 15, 2013 at 7:46 am

    Cannot figure out if some points in this article are incredibly racist and written out of an elitist jealousy, or if the writer is an ignorant socialist totally whacked out of his brain.

  16. M K   November 14, 2013 at 9:26 am

    I think cheap journalist tries to get some -ve popularity…

  17. SK   November 14, 2013 at 9:04 am

    About The Mission cost:

    Many of these journalists cribbing about the cost seem disconnected from India. We spent 450 crores on this mission. Let me put that in context. One of the local cricket teams – Mumbai Indians – alone is worth 1000 crores. Ambani built a home in Mumbai for 5000 crores. Every single day, Indians buy gold jewelry worth 1500 crores. An upcoming Bollywood movie (made about space) is costing over 500 crores. And finally, the Indian central government budget is 17 lakh crores (I actually rounded off this figure and that round-off error alone could fund 130 such missions). India doesn’t have more toilets, not because we don’t have extra 450 crores, but because of our poor execution of things. Don’t heap your blame on poor Isro for India’s social conditions.

    Ironically, a non-trivial portion of this poverty & hunger is due to the colonization under a power from where you are writing these articles.

  18. SK   November 14, 2013 at 9:03 am

    Guardian’s editor should through away this stupid reporter who UNNECESSARILY puts a stupid title…SHAME on you! and on Guardian…if they don’t take any action against the reporter.
    ——————————————————————————————————-
    Here is a part of a report from HIS QUOTED reference site (Washington Post)

    …..”We’re pulling for India,” said Bruce Jakosky, project leader for the U.S. spacecraft. “The more players we have in space exploration the better.”

    NOW SEE HERE YOU stupid reporter:
    ”Some of the data (from Mangalyan) will complement research expected to be conducted with a spacecraft NASA will launch later this month, the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission, nicknamed MAVEN.”
    _________________________________________________________________
    IF UK STILL HAS THESE STUPID SELF STYLED JOURNALISTS…..DEFINITELY UK WILL ENJOY A DARK FUTURE LIKE IT HAD DURING RENAISSANCE.
    BRAVO MAN….KEEP IT UP !!!
    —————————————————————————————————–
    EDITOR SIR!
    if you don’t correct the TITLE and take necessary action against your reporter, you will encourage titles in near future from OTHER STUPID reporters such as:

    1. “England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty”

    2. “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”

    3. “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

    4. Newton, Michelangelo and da Vinci are wasting time instead of building toilets. [ a prospective article title during European Renaissance]

  19. Lalit kumar   November 14, 2013 at 8:18 am

    this article shows that these people afraid of what we (India) are doing, and they will try to rationalize that our mission mars is cheap and useless, so that we do not get any encouragement, this is how world is, and we should do the same to them, i am fully confident that India will have useful space research then any one in this world. Not like them just for show…

  20. Ashok Nayak   November 14, 2013 at 6:43 am

    Lol. What an amazing and hilarious title. And what an ignorant “journalist” who is still living in the ’60s. The article simply could not be about space and science. One has to add in poverty (overwhelming at that!) to satisfy the hangovers of the colonial mindset. Now that the “White Man’s Burden” argument is not relevant, this seems to be the only approach they have left to undermine achievements of other nations – or at least nations they believe should perpetually toe the line. One could even argue who is responsible for this “overwhelming poverty” in the first place. But then, I would rather not give credence to this piece of absolute garbage masquerading as scientific reporting.

    In the same vein, some other headlines that should have made the news:

    “USA to launch man on the moon Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

    “Sir Isaac Newton discovers the law of gravity Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

    “Robert Darwin objects to son Charles’ frivolous cruise – says waste of time Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

    “UK’s Mars mission fails Amidst Overwhelming Incompetence”

  21. Ashok Nayak   November 14, 2013 at 6:41 am

    Lol. What an amazing and hilarious title. And what an ignorant “journalist” who is still living in the ’60s. The article simply could not be about space and science. One has to add in poverty (overwhelming at that!) to satisfy the hangovers of the colonial mindset. Now that the “White Man’s Burden” argument is not relevant, this seems to be the only approach they have left to undermine achievements of other nations – or at least nations they believe should perpetually toe the line. One could even argue who is responsible for this “overwhelming poverty” in the first place. But then, I would rather not give credence to this piece of absolute garbage masquerading as scientific reporting.

    In the same vein, some other headlines that should have made the news:

    “USA to launch man on the moon Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

    “Sir Isaac Newton discovers the law of gravity Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

    “Robert Darwin objects to son Charles’ frivolous cruise – says waste of time Amidst Overwhelming Poverty”

  22. Dinesh Shetti   November 14, 2013 at 12:53 am

    We as a country may be Poor but has not lost our dignity and mind to invade and Rob any other country (not even our neighboring Poor countries) in the name of Business for at least in past known 100000 Years. Please do not talk or write anything about any country you really don’t know. (Or at least Google and get some info and then talk/write)

    http://knowindia.gov.in/myindia/myindia_frame.php?id=10

  23. Siddharth Asthana   November 13, 2013 at 9:51 pm

    In the near future, if in case UK decides or rather manages to send a space mission, I would recommend to put this stupid writer in their spacecraft and take him along to mars forever. Thus, it will make our mother earth a better place to live. We, being a so-called poor nation, will not waste our money on him.
    And I guess the people writing articles should possess some level of Intelligence Quotient.

  24. Arijit Chakraborti   November 13, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    Good argument, but not a compelling one. The article failed to capture the sentiments around frugal innovation, and provoked emotions of many. However, it was successful in capturing attention (or website hits) of many through controversial statements.

  25. jitendra   November 13, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    when elephant walks, dogs bark but do elephant really care?

    • Sulaiman   November 18, 2013 at 1:46 am

      Well said Jitendra

  26. aj   November 13, 2013 at 9:33 am

    have some ice pack james… that should cool down the fire.. or write something about your country’s space program (good or bad, i don’t know). if you are so interested , ask your govt about its own spending programs.. in short mind your own business…

  27. balaji   November 13, 2013 at 9:32 am

    (snippet frm a firstpost article)
    What a refreshing headline! Not even poverty. It has to be “overwhelming poverty”. Apparently, as if space has something to do with poverty. Apparently, it is between funding Isro and solving poverty.
    Next time, when you write about something that Britain did well, sure to remember to randomly incorporate the poverty of Birmingham and the riots of London into the title.

    “England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty”

    “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”
    “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

    Read more at: http://www.firstpost.com/india/why-western-criticism-of-indias-mars-mission-is-blatant-racism-1224419.html?utm_source=ref_article

  28. Rajeev Maroli   November 13, 2013 at 8:34 am

    Those who do not understand India may continue to under estimate India. The desert caravan doesn’t stop or alter when dogs bark from oasis.
    My problem is something else. There has been this phrase ‘Aid to India’ mentioned by writers at will. Let me tell you, It is a face saving phrase used for your comfort. It is not aid. it is partial re-payment of the loot (of India) that the Brits made for centuries. To avoid further shame, chose the following depending upon the thickness of your skin. Thickness the least, chose the first, and so on. – 1. Repay all at once, heavily as a big lump-sum ( sorry, you don’t have the capacity. You boosed out all that long ago!) 2. Increase the quantum in installments – call it aid if that saves your face. 3. Quietly continue the present. And 4, if you have become a competitor to hippopotamus, stop the so called aid or re-payment and get lost. we care a damn.

  29. Kris   November 13, 2013 at 7:50 am

    What a Stupid article… !!!! These morons have to be thrown away from earth…

    • Sulaiman   November 18, 2013 at 1:48 am

      Well no place in the Mars. Ohh second thoughts may be we should put this moron in the next Mars Mission.

  30. Siddharth - an Indian   November 13, 2013 at 7:36 am

    why don’t these Brits mind their own business? Don’t they see terrorists flooding to their country from all over the world and destroying their country and economy? They are two-face cowards and can’t see good out of anything, especially if it’s from India… To hell with their comments and views on India. India rocks..

  31. Vikrama Gowda   November 13, 2013 at 7:11 am

    Very Poor article.
    Advantages of the mission:
    India is using its highly intellectual brains to build its space mission. You must know that most of the scientists in America’s NASA are Indians.
    If we just keep thinking on poverty we cant use our strength that’s our intelligence.
    An average Indian’s mathematics is best than the best mathematicians in Europe and U.S
    As rest of the world is outsourcing it’s Information technology related jobs and other jobs to India they can surely outsource their space missions to India we can do the same job in less than any can country can do adding to that you Europeans and Americans do not have such intellectual capacity to develop such highly advanced technologies with low cost.
    We can launch rest of the worlds satellite at a very lower price, why do you(Europeans and Americans) spend so much on space research??

  32. poor article   November 13, 2013 at 4:25 am

    This is just a poorly written article…
    The Asian ‘space-race’?!
    And ironically,India just spends a minuscule amount to showcase it’s supremacy compared to it’s counterparts elsewhere? Sounds logical to me!
    The Indian Government mismanages funds and reeks of corruption,the poor aren’t affected and it sounds very usual,doesn’t interest western journalists…
    Like The Joker from The Dark Knight (I know this is a bad reference),everybody loses it when a narrow perspective on an issue is raised!
    I am from India and instead of people (Indians and otherwise) looking at a scientific mission from a purely scientific perspective, have resorted to some shameless “Is not! Is too!”.
    This article just brings out some facts,though plausible and substantiated are quoted grossly out of context.
    I guess the best thing for the other space agencies would be to share and learn from each other instead of such hogwash.

  33. Ayush   November 13, 2013 at 12:10 am

    We honestly don’t need a certificate from the west. We don’t care if you approve of our technological advancements or not or if you choose to ‘pity’ us for our ‘overwhelming poverty’. The only reason why this piece of crap is disturbing is the fact that you continue to live in this state of denial and consider yourself to be above the rest of the world. I’m not racist and my school made me believe that it’s a thing of the past and that the west has finally grown some brains. But it turns out, ironically enough, they too were living in a state of denial themselves, and most definitely your school did not really do a great job at building better human beings. Racism is still just as widespread and rampant and will soon be making you pay for your mistake. Just to put things in perspective, had it not been for the worthless, lazy queen and her servants who somehow managed to suck out all the wealth from this nation, we would have been a lot better. But we chose not to sit back and crib about it, fine a section of our population is poor, there are kids out there on the streets who find it hard to get two square meals, but we are dealing with all that too, despite the iron fist rule of the majesty whom I don’t find so majestic after all. For now just pray to god that when WE reach the top we don’t make your kids pay for your mistakes. It’s instances like these that make me forget all that I have learned and it’s depressing. I hope for a better world, but I know that’ll never happen.

  34. SSP   November 12, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    James Fenner , u should be terminated for defamatory remarks to a nation which is rich in culture, education and civilization. Shame on U.

  35. Someone   November 12, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Why dont you go F*ck yourself?

  36. JIT   November 12, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    whAT A mORON!!

  37. Nitin   November 12, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    He is no science write. Just another douche bag who writes lot of crap stuff online to make money out of advertisements. See his other blogs:
    http://guardianlv.com/author/gmattergaming/

  38. Rahul Ganju   November 12, 2013 at 11:01 am

    Height of paid media

  39. PRIYE   November 12, 2013 at 10:47 am

    i dont understand what the author thinks of INDIA….
    ISRO HAS HELPED A LOT IN DEVELOPING OUR ECONOMY//
    GET SOME KNOWLEDGE ABOUT ISRO

  40. James Adams   November 12, 2013 at 8:39 am

    I think it’s a “SHAME that UK’s Space Program does not even exist” but a Nation with “Overwhelming Poverty” has the audacity to launch and outwit us British is fuming..! For Gods sake we were there masters..!!! We give aids to them so that they feel poor ..! How dare they outwit us…!!

    • Teja   November 12, 2013 at 9:24 am

      Are you insane?! Please try to learn the difference between ‘their’ and ‘there’ before calling yourselves our masters. What existed in India few centuries back wasn’t a servant-master tie but a crude political gamble dished out by your cheeky British ancestors through colonialism. I don’t know if you’re being sarcastic or plain stupid in posting such content online.

      • arvind   November 12, 2013 at 11:03 am

        calm down , he was being sarcastic..

    • Nix Ram   November 12, 2013 at 11:14 am

      haha..!! Good sarcasm, James. It’s a shame that the world doesn’t see the positive side of things.!

  41. Tejaswi   November 12, 2013 at 6:10 am

    Author seems to be overwhelmingly jealous of India..why shouldn’t poor man dream high?.. It’s a long term gain that India is gonna get from it Mr Author.. Low-cost mission and Frugal engineering with advance technology. Tell me who doesn’t what this kind of product?.. India could a play huge role in Global Space Market in near future and may turn out as mulch-million industry. Indians had been greatly benefited by Space projects undertaken by ISRO. Few days back India has evaded the disaster caused by cyclone Phalini and saved many lives by evacuating thousands of people.How?..ISRO satellite had observed it.. Had Philippines got this kind of disaster evading satellite, people wouldn’t have died in high numbers.

  42. Kunal   November 12, 2013 at 6:07 am

    Hats off for your deep research about India. I wonder how you got all these stuffs that people don’t know who lives here. This Mangalyana is sent by the money that US and UK have given to India, so I request you to please tell them not to give aid to India as we are wasting their money on some stupid Mars Mission.
    Also I request the jurey of Noble prize to give the author the Noble for spreading peace in the World.
    Applauses!!!

  43. Meow   November 12, 2013 at 5:15 am

    Booo someone’s jealous 😛

  44. Praveen   November 12, 2013 at 3:00 am

    I applaud James Fenner for this wonderfully crafted article filled with so much wisdom. He should certainly be considered for a couple of nobels. India and broadly speaking any country with poverty should solve all their problems and then take up research and science projects. It is condemnable that India spent “72 million Dollars” on a mars mission! That is unimaginable in a country which spent 40 Billion Dollars for weddings in 2012, a country with a Trillion dollar economy.

  45. Swapnil S   November 12, 2013 at 2:33 am

    Author dont be a cry baby. We have loads of money to blow off on missions like this.

    We have spend billions of dollar’s into our defense and nuclear programs. Recently we have announced a Food Security Bill in which we gonna spend billion of doller’s year to give subsided food to poor. So we dont mind spending couple of billion dollers on our space mission we makes us proud.

    I can understand how jealous you must be when we did this. I want to give you a heads up that many more is yet to come. Hope you will continue writing on it. As a journalist you have right to express your views so have i.

  46. Aniket   November 12, 2013 at 2:12 am

    What do you mean author? Nation with poverty cannot advance in technology? and the nation with heavy Debt can borrow more debt and spend tax payer’s money for the QE, Financial disasters, space mission and attack on nations?

  47. Biswarup   November 12, 2013 at 1:28 am

    just wonder …how could Guardian Express allow such “overwhelming Journalism “… is it due to “overwhelming jealousy” or “overwhelming racism’ or “overwhelming inefficiency ” on part of 1st world “overwhelming countries” ?…

  48. Lucky   November 12, 2013 at 1:20 am

    Author should know the fact of Isro’s Commercial Organizations(Antrix Corporation Limited) Revenue

  49. Administrador Gral.   November 12, 2013 at 12:50 am

    ISRO rocks.

  50. The fundamentalist   November 12, 2013 at 12:49 am

    Discrimination level 99

  51. EK   November 12, 2013 at 12:30 am

    when US sent Apollo missions..poverty rate was 22% atleast we are not splurging like the Western countries and then hitting debt ceiling..lack of funds to govts…go on bombarding countries just for the heck of it..

  52. Bob   November 12, 2013 at 12:28 am

    The Indian economy of 1 trillion has no need of your pathetic aid — Go and help your struggling economy — Soon enough you will have to beg for alms from Asia …

  53. Bob   November 12, 2013 at 12:24 am

    What a refreshing headline!

    Not even poverty. It has to be “overwhelming poverty”.

    Who are we to launch into space? Should we not ask our British colonial masters before doing anything? Apparently the other countries engaging in scientific research face no poverty. Apparently, space has something to do with poverty. Apparently, it is between funding Isro and solving poverty. You cannot do both. No sir, no.

    Next time, when you write about something that Britain did well, sure to remember to randomly incorporate the poverty of Birmingham and the riots of London into the title.

    “England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty”

    “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”

    “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

  54. lanjaodaka   November 11, 2013 at 11:43 pm

    Dude dont just sit there and say watever u like …… just get to know the truth and then say something meaningful. _i_

  55. Emmaj   November 11, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    There is no question about poverty in India but Indian Space Program which started about 50 years back has brought in billions of dollars in revenue by leasing transponders, by selling remote sensing data to the US and European countries among other poorer African and far eastern nations. Besides, it has made it cheaper for the other nations to launch their payloads- transponders, cameras, weather satellites/payloads and for small issues like ‘when to plant the crop’ and ‘where can I find more fish’.

    Similar things have been said throughout India built smaller payloads, then a remote sensing satellite, communication satellites and finally developed launching technology the cost of which was just a fraction of what they paid to ESA before.

    if only poor(er) African country decided to establish and fund scientific orgs., tech. universities and institutions, they wouldn’t be so poor anymore!

    As a govt. agency ISRO cannot make a “profit” but it has a sister corporation called ANTRIX corp. that has revenues in 100s of millions of dollars. India’s space program thus far has paid itself many times over!

    You may not agree but I hope you can appreciate this long-term plan and appreciate that in spite of having all the problems India has, it still wants to invest in science and technology. I would agree with you if this was just an arrogant space-race, but it is not.

  56. Aravind   November 10, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    Guys.. This is not the British Guardian. It is a spin-off from Las Vegas, where more money changes hands every week. I dunno why, but the Americans really seem hurt with this mission..

  57. Saumya Dey   November 10, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    By the way, did Guardian tell its readers that in 2012 the European Union asked India and China for a bail-out package. Read about it here – http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2012-06-24/news/32393554_1_eurozone-crisis-bailout-fund-imf

    Why take a ten billion dollar bail-out package from a country where there are so many poor people? Isn’t it a bit hypocritical? The amount that India has spent on the Mars mission is miniscule in comparison.

  58. jayant   November 10, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Hi, I live in India and I like everyone else living in India has been a victim of either of these problems poverty, hunger increasing mistrust in the government and its policies, corruption, bad systems etc. but this article only focuses on poverty what about the other problems?? I think the author should explore more and find more flaws in our system.

    I say that because last I checked Poverty is a world wide problem not just a problem in India, developed countries also has to face this problem. Stating that Poverty is a worldwide problem I think ,even with my lack of knowledge, its safe to say that Poverty is a result of many things lack of education, the economic system etc. and instead of pining it on one nation we should be concerned about it as the world.
    What I observe by this launch is that :
    – Space odysseys can be conducted on a lot less budget then we think.
    – The amount of brain drain has decreased in India, which I find surprising because with lack of a complete education system and less opportunities even I focus on trying to get education from a university in a developed nation.

    P.S. My views are bounded by my knowledge and exposure of this world, but I think living in India I would be a better judge of whether this mission was a FAIL or a WIN. and I am very proud of the team that worked on that launch and also that this mission was a success.

  59. naty   November 10, 2013 at 1:47 am

    It seems the majority of people who disagree with this article are Indian. Are you so blind to your people’s suffering? I watched the special that Oprah Winfrey did on India. Oh how the people suffer there. Let go of your arrogance and have some humility. Britain and the US did not and does not have the poverty that you do. Open your eyes and stop the paranoia.

    • Emmaj   November 11, 2013 at 10:35 pm

      There is no question about poverty in India but Indian Space Program which started about 50 years back has brought in billions of dollars in revenue by leasing transponders, by selling remote sensing data to the US and European countries among other poorer African and far eastern nations. Besides, it has made it cheaper for the other nations to launch their payloads- transponders, cameras, weather satellites/payloads and

      As a govt. agency ISRO cannot make a “profit” but it has a sister corporation called ANTRIX corp. that has revenues in 100s of millions of dollars. India’s space program thus far has paid itself many times over!

      Im an Indian living in the US and I hope you can appreciate this long-term plan. I would agree with you if this was just an arrogant space-race.

    • Bob   November 12, 2013 at 12:52 am

      Naty – It’s is not Paranoia…. It’s about empty rhetoric…. Western media has no right to represent my country in poor light — Can you not read – what a silly headline is that???!!!!….

      The West must acknowledge that India and ASIA has arrived – And after years of disdain – we would like to say “ENOUGH, ENOUGH, ENOUGH”

      • naty   November 13, 2013 at 4:10 pm

        I don’t think it’s about having arrived. As an outside the only idea of India I have is what presented to me through the media whether it’s good or bad. I just think it’s more noble to stop and take care of the poor,destitute than launch some spacecraft. I think when you help those untouchables God will bless you then you will have truly arrived.

    • Nitin Raman   November 12, 2013 at 12:05 pm

      Poverty in India is mostly because of the combination of corruption and the high population and not because the country doesn’t have any income. You can’t expect to stop all other levels of growth before getting rid of corruption. Everything has to go hand in hand. I think the western media is a bit hyped.
      According to statistics, India and China are the fastest to come out of poverty. According to a 2011 poverty Development Goals Report, as many as 320 million people in India and China are expected to come out of extreme poverty in the next four years, while India’s poverty rate is projected to drop 10% by 2015.

  60. Unnikrishnan R   November 10, 2013 at 1:11 am

    The author makes absolutely no attempt to hide his racist views in this article. As for Americans who want to read this article in perspective I recommend this : http://balajiviswanathan.quora.com/Indian-Space-Mission-Poverty-and-Closet-Racism

  61. Mike   November 10, 2013 at 12:53 am

    I agree with the author. It’s a disgrace that India chooses to send missions to Mars while its people starve. I cannot think of a more irresponsible thing to do in light of the country’s overwhelming poverty and malnutrition levels. It doesn’t make you look advanced and modern, just callous.

    • Emmaj   November 11, 2013 at 10:37 pm

      There is no question about poverty in India but Indian Space Program which started about 50 years back has brought in billions of dollars in revenue by leasing transponders, by selling remote sensing data to the US and European countries among other poorer African and far eastern nations. Besides, it has made it cheaper for the other nations to launch their payloads- transponders, cameras, weather satellites/payloads and for small issues like ‘when to plant the crop’ and ‘where can I find more fish’.

      As a govt. agency ISRO cannot make a “profit” but it has a sister corporation called ANTRIX corp. that has revenues in 100s of millions of dollars. India’s space program thus far has paid itself many times over!

      Im an Indian living in the US and I hope you can appreciate this long-term plan. I would agree with you if this was just an arrogant space-race

    • Nitin Raman   November 12, 2013 at 11:42 am

      Mate, after reading your statement, I wonder how far have you gone in your academics/ basic education. Do you really think a space mission is just something glamorous and nothing else? A successful mission can open a whole lot of things good for the country, many a times for the world. Sad you wouldn’t understand any of those.
      PS: I work for Airbus in Bristol, UK and spend pretty much of my time researching remote signal processing (Sorry again..! Guess that didn’t make much sense to you). 🙂

  62. Sai Madhusudanan   November 9, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    I got few headlines.

    England wins 10 Olympic golds amidst all the poverty
    “NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”
    “European Space Agency launches a satellite despite the inability to control religious riots in Paris and Tottenham, London”.

  63. Ravindra   November 9, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    Is there no minimum level of IQ requirement to write in this site? It seems so. The author knows neither India nor Space missions.

  64. Anirudh   November 9, 2013 at 11:05 am

    Best quote I read from a friend today, “Doesn’t the UK have a non-existent space program!”

  65. Ashik   November 9, 2013 at 7:00 am

    Mr. James Fenner…. Sorry, pathetic article with no co relation….please increase your knowledge about space missions run by super powers US and Russia and see were thier economies stood at time when they went ahead. ..you should feel sad for UK for their poor space research ability and write an article to encourage them before writing such irrelevant article to satisfy under dog feelings of some people.

  66. murlidharshenoy   November 9, 2013 at 12:18 am

    well the US government was on the brink of running out of money just about like a month ago.. Why are they then launching their Mars mission on the November 18th? and by the way they are spending 10 times more money than India did. I think this post is tries clearly reflects the west’s ignorance and jealosy!

    Also i feel that this is another way sites like these get traffic! How desperate can once be to get traffic!

  67. VKV.RAVICHANDRAN   November 8, 2013 at 11:54 pm

    The author spews venom in this article. While the entire nation rejoices the successful launch of #Mangalyaan the author has portrayed as if majority of people are against it.Way back in 1975 when India’s first satellite ‘Aryabhata’ built by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) was launched to gain experience in building and operating a satellite in space, there was similar pessimistic view from some quarters. But for such space initiatives by India, we could not have achieved so much in information and communication technology.People in remote parts of India are now able to communicate with each other and farmers like me are able to plan our farming operations based on the accurate weather data. We are able to get prompt counseling from agri scientists for better management of our crop. We the Indians need such technologies more than any other nation.Let us ignore the anti development propaganda by this kind of vested interest media.

  68. Amar!   November 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm

    ISROs budget is 0.34% of our GPO. Authors or supposed to be more informed before they publish their topic. It feels like Guardianlv.com is a big disappointment to us now.

  69. Veeresh   November 8, 2013 at 6:22 pm

    This guy is pessimist…..never want to see positive side

  70. Rahul   November 8, 2013 at 11:22 am

    Any sources for this statement: “Many in the country have objected to vast sums of government money being funnelled into the high-profile project”

    Poorly researched and based on prejudices.

  71. Harris Muhammed   November 8, 2013 at 9:25 am

    Hi fellow Indians, after reading a few comments I get the sense that you’ve mistaken this news site for the British daily The Guardian’s official site http://www.theguardian.com. This is a Las Vegas based low profile news agency.

    I think the author’s bitterness and motivation for this ill-spirited article comes from the fact that the NASA operations were put on hiatus for couple weeks when the currently dysfunctional US government was shutdown last month.

    • bob   November 9, 2013 at 7:19 am

      And the author of the article is from the UK – a “science writer”

  72. Nandakumar   November 8, 2013 at 5:33 am

    Overwhelmingly stupid writing! Racist tendency to the core. And hiding your views as that of ‘some Indians’.
    Can somebody explain how the opinion of (is it really?) miniscule ‘some Indians’ (who are anyway on the payroll of anti-Indian entities) mean anything more than ‘billions of Indians’?

  73. Dharen   November 8, 2013 at 2:31 am

    You stole into our home,held a gun to our heads like a thug, sucked our blood for hundreds of years, starved and murdered us. Then as a parting kick, you even divided us in order to further your strategic interests.

    You are scum and the world is relieved that you are finally finished. Learn to mind your business and know your place in the world today, a pipsqueak, bankrupt nation that can only ever be a lapdog to the Americans.

  74. Disgusted Indian   November 8, 2013 at 2:15 am

    Utterly shameless article. I did not expect the Guardian to be this blatantly racist in their reporting of news. A lot of respect I had for your news media is now up in dust.

  75. Preejit   November 8, 2013 at 1:33 am

    3.69 rupees (~4 pence) per indian citizen for the mission. Yes James Fenner that could have been used to eradicate poverty. I see math isnt your strong side

  76. Sangeeth Kumar   November 8, 2013 at 12:32 am

    Hope you will learn from your mistake. If you are still thinking what really is the mistake you’ve done, refer http://balajiviswanathan.quora.com/Indian-Space-Mission-Poverty-and-Closet-Racism

  77. Sangeeth Kumar   November 8, 2013 at 12:26 am

    Hope you will learn from your mistake. If you are still thinking what really is the mistake you’ve done, refer http://balajiviswanathan.quora.com/Indian-Space-Mission-Poverty-and-Closet-Racism

  78. Neehar   November 7, 2013 at 9:13 pm

    Yellow Journalism at its best…why did Britain conduct Olympics, why did you not make Britain poverty free? and the author keeps forgetting about the economic condition of west especially Britain…the self centered , and greedy nature of the western countries has damaged the economy, environment and growth in the countries like India..control the IMF, World and keep snatching away the food from poor

  79. Rohit   November 7, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    Eradicating the poverty isn’t a space research organization’s job. If somebody is doing a job at 1/10 the price AND 1/6th the time, appreciate them!! Technology developed in one area can be deployed elsewhere for gains!! Stop criticizing them for their existence!!

    FYI: The cheapest version of a single Boeing 787 Dreamliner costs more than twice the cost of the entire Mars Mission, end to end. Not to mention the technology commercialization that ISRO’s commercial arm Antrix will be able to do after this mission.

    • Rajagopal   November 7, 2013 at 9:54 pm

      Rohit, It should also be mentioned that the Boeing 787 “Dreamliner” has crashed the dreams of many, what with the panel of the fuselage missing on a flight to Bangalore and the window breaking on a recent flight! I see the report as one oozing with jealousy and green with envy.

  80. DevD   November 7, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    I honestly think the outrage is only because of the extremely poorly chosen title of the article. When the author himself claims to not have an opinion but simply reporting facts he should have more sense than to have mixed two different topics in his title. This sort of yellow journalism just invites extreme censure and it offers no shred of protection to the author seeking to hide behind “the facts” from inflamed patriots seeking to bashing him in the comments. The author I feel was just pandering to western opinions of Indians being extremely backward and advances in some fields just surprises the readers, hence the cushion of familiarity, i.e. poverty.

  81. Sunil Spammed Choudhury   November 7, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    frustration of a loser nothing else their mars mission failed miserably and stands much behind indian mission both technologically and economically, britons you’ve got a thick skin we could probably stitch a shoe with it you have nothing else worth contributing to this world!

  82. kumar   November 7, 2013 at 10:30 am

    This author is a Racist, He should learn Brits looting Indian and know the facts about India, any how we dont care you guys

  83. Yojet sharma   November 7, 2013 at 7:13 am

    You know what James F(uck)nner, enough with the analysis and comparisons. You have your own country’s issues, we have ours. Stop writing as if yours is so perfect that it gives you the right to write about as if you’re some higher ruling authority. Come with some more criticism and analysis about my country’s activities, and you’ll wish you wouldn’t have.

  84. Alok   November 7, 2013 at 6:32 am

    Ohh cmon so what should we have taken permission from the queen before the launch..just because you cant do it in an effecient way doesnt mean others should not do it..getyour facts rite Mr James..poverty in the UK is at all time high…there are more riots..goons out on the street than ever before and you want to make this statement..first clean your street and then look at other streets.

  85. vikingdash   November 7, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Dear James,

    Firstly, kudos for being such a pig. I believe this is typical of the Brits. (*read Piers Morgan*). Secondly are you seriously threatening by saying “some of those who fund India”? Here’s a tip. Its your MPs who came begging to us to give you the contract to buy your Euro-fighters . You might want to read that up again. Oh yea, we didn’t buy them, there goes $10 billion. D’oh !
    Lastly, I know you must be feeling the pinch cuz we were ‘ruled’ by you for so long. No, James, India does not give a hoot about your colonial BS. We’re here and we’re going to show you how things are done, just like how we showed you this. So ramble on..
    And as Pink Floyd line kinda makes sense here, albeit in a different context – “Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way..”
    I rest my case. And Happy Diwali, mate.

    • Bob   November 12, 2013 at 12:38 am

      Well Said

  86. Ismail   November 7, 2013 at 4:46 am

    How about this for an headline :
    Keeping in mind its “overwhelming” poverty, India sends a Mars Mission with a frugal budget of just $73 million. NASA and ESA wonder how..!!

    • Sunil Spammed Choudhury   November 7, 2013 at 1:35 pm

      lovely

  87. ravi   November 7, 2013 at 4:35 am

    what a bunch of Looser!! Guardian Sucks!!! Overwhelming poverty?? what about your country!! The English economy is just because of the Indian Billionaires in England, just remember, you people exploited Indians for ages, you have no right to talk about Poverty!! finally The Guardian Sucks!! the writer of this article is Insane!!

  88. harsh   November 7, 2013 at 3:58 am

    You just made 2 unrelated subjects in order to make an eye catching headline related to indian stereotypes. I sincerely think poverty and space are 2 separate issues for any country. I pity you guardian.

  89. Sampan Chakraborty (@bosemicrowave)   November 7, 2013 at 3:32 am

    I just posted your article on twitter & made some relevant analysis.

  90. Udit Gupta   November 7, 2013 at 2:06 am

    Poverty exists in India not because of lack of money but because of poor execution of government policies. This mission if successful in sending its launcher to Mars will serve as an inspiration for future generations…. Remember we Indians are progeny of Aryabhatta and Bhaskacharya and its insurmountable for 3rd grade journalist like you to distract us from investing in science and technology…

  91. Iarud   November 7, 2013 at 1:55 am

    Analyzing a country on its technological improvements to its poverty is never a good one. Sticking with only the technical aspects would have not called these many peoples to comment here (including me). As a researcher, I find the knitting of poverty to a country’s technical experiments little awkward. Any scientific person knows the importance of resource such as funds and brains, if a country has both, it is an achievement, if the country has only brains, then it is not hard for it to utilize, even the lowest budget allocated for an project. A good research is the one which has innovation with low cost & high performance. And it is better to salute that research than to try devaluing it.

  92. Sachin   November 7, 2013 at 1:06 am

    Thanks for pointing out the poverty we have in our country. Would you be kind enough to help us resolve this issue by giving back all the money that British Empire took from us during it’s 150 year long stay in our homeland.

  93. Kaustav   November 6, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    Dear James,
    You may want to have a look at this >> (http://balajiviswanathan.quora.com/Indian-Space-Mission-Poverty-and-Closet-Racism?srid=icC7&share=1 ) before you think of writing a racist article next time. I pity you and I pity guardian even more for giving you an opportunity to write on their website.

  94. KLK Raja   November 6, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    This article is the best example of “How not to talk out of context and get booed!”. Thumbs down James Fenner. You can be better than this.

  95. Indian   November 6, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    Feed your poor children well, before making stupid and ignorant comments about our advanced space program.
    http://www.cpag.org.uk/child-poverty-facts-and-figures

  96. Harsh Prasad   November 6, 2013 at 10:38 am

    We understand that you have not presented your opinion, but just a glimpse at that headline gives the idea of the thinking behind such writing. If you are not providing opinions and stating the facts, then you should have highlighted how ISRO has achieved this feat, of achieving something from its own earnings within a minimal budget. But no, you wanted to highlight the fact that despite being poor these guys are aiming for space. It is not difficult to understand how humiliating your writing is. Your journalism is affected by such petty acts. Edit the article again.

  97. Sachin   November 6, 2013 at 9:27 am

    $75m is paltry compared to an estimated 1.2-6 billion pounds (estimated cost to the economy and treasury) some countries spend on their prince’s wedding. A treasury hugely benefiting from colonial money. No offense intended.

  98. Tyagi   November 6, 2013 at 3:53 am

    Brits have expertise to remove poverty in parts of world by only handing out doles and whining. Even those who were exploited rapaciously by them (Indians) have left them behind. Khisyani Billi Khambha Nochey.

  99. Aditya Sharma   November 6, 2013 at 2:09 am

    I am sure your article on “PB&J sandwich amidst drug addiction” will be as interesting!!

  100. James Fenner   November 6, 2013 at 1:15 am

    Hi guys,

    Wow, quite a series of impassioned responses. I thank you all for taking the time to comment. I also appreciate that perhaps many of you are highly patriotic citizens, and commend your attempts to defend your country.

    I feel compelled to point out that I have not offered my opinion on the subject. For the first three quarters of the article, I primarily focus on the technological achievements of ISRO and their ambitions.

    During the latter part of the article, as you are all acutely aware, I focus upon the poverty issue that plagues much of India. Again, I have not offered any personal opinion in this section either. I myself have not directly connected the issue of India’s space program with poverty, in contrast to some of the viewpoints expressed here.

    I felt the need to cover the issue of poverty, since it is a point that has been raised by many within India itself, as well as those who provide aid to India. These are the sectors from which the Indian government has come under fire – not me, personally.

    I did not feel that it would be appropriate to ignore such a high-profile issue, simply to appease certain factions. NASA and the American government have also been heavily scrutinized by the media for what some consider to be excessive spending, and ISRO (rightly or wrongly) will experience the same level of scrutiny.

    I fully accept that it is an incredibly controversial source of debate, and tempers are running high. However, name-calling, pointless sarcasm and baseless accusations of racism only serve to belittle some of the more meritorious and factual based retorts that I have observed in the comments.

    I particularly enjoyed Rishav’s reasoned and well-thought out response. His comment shows rational debate at its finest; I implore many of you to read it before commenting.

    Kind regards,

    James.

    • Sudharshan (@r_sudharshan)   November 6, 2013 at 6:51 am

      India is actually so rich, we spend about 2-3 Billion rupees alone on our Diwali crackers. It is only because of the British colonial rule, this country became so unbalanced and illiterate as it happened elsewhere in the world.
      And for your mindless article and heart-burning approach toward this matter..Read this reply
      http://balajiviswanathan.quora.com/Indian-Space-Mission-Poverty-and-Closet-Racism

    • devilslair   November 6, 2013 at 7:04 am

      Please don’t be bothered with India’s poor,

      “I did not feel that it would be appropriate to ignore such a high-profile issue, simply to appease certain factions. NASA and the American government have also been heavily scrutinized by the media for what some consider to be excessive spending, and ISRO (rightly or wrongly) will experience the same level of scrutiny.”

      Have you scrutinized the cost of war on Iraq based on fake reports? I guess that amount could have fed entire Somalia for years or even more nations in Africa who face acute shortage of food and essential commodities due to insurgencies or drought.

      Secondly why don’t you talk about a good size of British Adults who sit for 15 hours in front of Play Stations or other game consoles instead of working? You talk about AID…please stop it immediately, we do not need the aid and also return the bounty British Empire stole from India. Dammit you yourself enjoy a economy based on stolen money from colonies and then have the audacity to lecture the victims on how to spend money.

      What a way…………..

    • Kaushik Devarajaiah   November 6, 2013 at 9:56 am

      India is where 17% of world lives. So, obviously there are a LOT of people here and hence and a lot of POVs. Just because few Indians made irrational comments about the the mission’s impact to poverty, it doesn’t warrant your attention, leave alone highlighting it by putting it as part of the heading to your article.

      As a responsible and unbiased journalist, you should have also stated how insignificant the cost of the mission is, for India. Choosing to report only specific information is an indirect way of trying to convey your biased opinions.

    • HGM   November 6, 2013 at 12:58 pm

      Do you know that our president referred to British aid as ‘peanuts’?
      That’s what your ‘aid’ means to us.
      And I havent seen anyone in India complain about ISRO’s activities. Dont make things up and make your condescending nature so obvious.

    • Bhanu Potta   November 6, 2013 at 7:29 pm

      James,

      I have to say this piece of yours is not well researched and indicates your incomprehension of India. Sensational titles won’t get you anywhere in the long term.

      Looks like you have not noticed, or chose to ignore, the Economics of the Indian Mars Mission.

      India’s Mars mission at just INR 450 Crore (~ 7.3MN USD) amounts to INR 12 per Kilometer (~ 0.19 USD per Kilometer) which is equivalent to typical Auto Fare in India, at times the Auto Guy would demand more 🙂

      Truly a Growth Market feat by Indian Space Research organisation!!!!

      I call you to introspect for yourself and consider updating the article with the Economics and speak how this is an example that any country can aspire for scientific independence.

      May better sense prevail for your own good.

      Cheers….

    • Dasharathy N Ramesh   November 7, 2013 at 5:46 am

      Dear James,

      Firstly, kudos for being such a pig. I believe this is typical of the Brits. (*read Piers Morgan*). Secondly are you seriously threatening by saying “some of those who fund India”? Here’s a tip. Its your MPs who came begging to us to give you the contract to buy your Euro-fighters . You might want to read that up again. Oh yea, we didn’t buy them, there goes $10 billion. D’oh !
      Lastly, I know you must be feeling the pinch cuz we were ‘ruled’ by you for so long. No, James, India does not give a hoot about your colonial BS. We’re here and we’re going to show you how things are done, just like how we showed you this. So ramble on..
      And the Pink Floyd line kinda makes sense here, albeit in a different context – “Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way..”
      I rest my case. And Happy Diwali, mate.

    • Sunil Spammed Choudhury   November 7, 2013 at 1:41 pm

      who are you to scrutinize man? you are simply jealous of our achievements now stop defending?

      And do us a favor, please use common sense before writing such things, we have enough of our own dumb Indian journalists, we don’t need alsatian breed now!

    • Vishal   November 7, 2013 at 8:25 pm

      I did not take the time to read your article. The headline itself is off-putting. Clearly, you are on a bid to seek attention with a sensationalist headline. Think about it, you are making poverty sound like a natural disaster! It is like stating that NASA launched something into space amidst America’s broken healthcare system! Journalism, really?

  101. biji   November 6, 2013 at 12:54 am

    what a moron he is..lol

  102. Riddhi Mahapatra   November 5, 2013 at 10:45 pm

    Well said James. Poverty ridden India should not fund brainchild of smart Indians. These brains should move to NASA and help US maintain its space research supremacy. And then you will write another article of how Indians are stealing your jobs.

  103. Basu Raj S   November 5, 2013 at 10:40 pm

    India needs to spend on research to master of the science of the future. The $75 million spent on the Mars mission is microscopic peanuts in an economy of $1.5 trillion. This money primarily went into work of needy scientists and grad students. This a miniscule investment in pursuit of science. In fact, we spend far bigger amounts on IPL cricket and we spend 5000 crore for crackers. We are developing country, jealous man leave this kind of attitude towards INDIA & grow up. One day in future we will rule whole universe.

  104. Riddler on the roof   November 5, 2013 at 10:39 pm

    James Fenner, if you are so concerned, kindly request your queen to return our Koh-i-noor back to us or pay us its current value. Then you will not have to worry about the “poverty conundrum” of India. Hypocrisy redefined!!

  105. Sriram Naresh Akula   November 5, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    THE WRITER OF THIS ARTICLE SEEMS TO BE A MORON & JEALOUS!!! POOR FAGGOT!!! …. THIS SHOWS HOW BIASED THE PERSPECTIVES OF SO CALLED INTERNATIONAL/WESTERN/ENGLISH MEDIA IS JEALOUS ABOUT DEVELOPING NATIONS COMPETING WITH THEM IN ALL AREAS OF TECHNOLOGY…..GROW UP YOU JEALOUS KID 😀 HA HA

  106. Jingcha   November 5, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    This is hilarious.. US by far has the highest debt in the world. 20% of America’s population cannot afford health care. Recession is still hit in United States. Yet, you have fancy companies coming up with fancy products. Govt spending millions on political campaign, Billions of $$$ “wasted” in unnecessary things. At $78 M, this whole project is cheaper than what it took you to make Iron Man.. (Are you kidding me!! ). In fact, India can send almost 2 more spaceships for the cost that you Americans spent on making fancy Hollywood movies. Definitely, spending spacecrafts that too at such an economical price and helping the international research community is WAY BETTER than making worthless movies.! I think NASA needs to learn how to make economical spacecrafts from India. Go figure!

    PS: By the way, I am not Indian, I am Chinese

    • Basu Raj S   November 5, 2013 at 10:48 pm

      well said

    • biji   November 6, 2013 at 12:53 am

      jingcha…i like it!!!

    • babydaly   November 6, 2013 at 1:16 am

      superb………. jingcha……

    • Danish   November 7, 2013 at 2:15 am

      Kudos!

    • kumar   November 7, 2013 at 12:43 pm

      Well said Jingcha. Loved it!

    • Sunil Spammed Choudhury   November 7, 2013 at 1:33 pm

      salute jingcha

  107. DelhiRIUM (@DelhiRIUM)   November 5, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Amreeka shud shut down NASA until all those on food stamps get jobs

  108. Rishav   November 5, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    Before whining starts about the wisdom of spending money on space research/exploration while there are other issues facing India:

    1) ISRO’s(Indian Space Research Organization) budget is only 0.34 per cent of Central Government expenditure currently and 0.08 per cent of the GDP(~USD 800 Million). Compare that to billions spent on “Fix Poverty” programs such as Employment Guarantee Programs(NREGA, USD 7.24+ Billion spent each year) and Subsidized/Free Food Program(FSB,USD 20+ Billion to be spent each year) etc.

    2) And Mars Orbiter Mission/Mangalyaan would cost USD ~27 Million only.

    3) ISRO is actually funding itself thanks to annual revenue from foreign satellite launches and sale of satellite data/imagery(that is useful for things like Google Maps for example) through its Antrix Subsidiary. Last time I checked it was INR 9 BILLION. source.

    4) Data generated by ISRO and related organizations is helping the poorest of poor in India:

    Voluminous data from the Indian remote sensing satellites has benefited millions of farmers and fishermen in achieving higher productivity and making optimal utilisation of resources, a senior space scientist said Saturday.

    “Studies by the premier economic research institute NCAER have shown that remote sensing data has accrued multiple benefits to farmers across the country with seven percent increase in productivity and helping the farm sector to contribute about Rs.50,000 crore to the national gross domestic product (GDP) over the years,” Indian Society of Remote Sensing president V.K. Dadhwal told reporters here.

    Similarly, application of remote sensing data by the fishing community contributed about Rs.24,000 crore to the GDP and saved fuel consumption by 30 percent with timely advisories on weather, sea conditions and identification of potential fishing zones for maximizing the catch. source

    5) And it is saving lot of lives:

    India was hit hard by Cyclone Phailin, with 12 million people impacted, including millions evacuated from the Odisha coast to safety earlier this week. This was the strongest storm to hit the state in 14 years, and it devastated homes and villages in both Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states, with flooding that has closed roads and left some 100,000 people stranded.[..]

    The country’s satellite imagery satellites are being credited with saving lives thanks to better forecasting, and the ability to share intensity with citizens and policymakers to urge evacuation. [..]

    There are 11 Indian remote sensing satellites in service, allowing the National Remote Sensing Centre in Hyderabad to help agencies forecast cyclones more than 72 hours in advance. [..]

    The synthetic aperture radar satellites, Risat-1 launched in April last year and Risat-2 which has been in orbit since April 2009 have the ability to look for impending cyclones even at night and through clouds. The synthetic aperture radar in the satellites enables applications in agriculture too, especially for paddy monitoring during kharif season. Saral, an Indio-French satellite launched on February 25, 2013, can study ocean circulation and sea surface elevation.

    “Those who criticise the expenditure on space science don’t realise its contribution to not just saving lives but alleviating poverty,” says Bhargava, who founded the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad. “You can argue that the space department gets higher allocation, but it is well justified. After all, Indian space scientist makes satellites and rockets at a fraction of the cost of similar US projects.”

    TL;DR: Investment in Science and Technology == Good.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/1pxxvk/india_has_successfully_launched_a_spacecraft_to/cd76y7g

  109. Nitin   November 5, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    frankly we are both amused & angered by such idiotic analysis. Anyone who is trying to connect poverty with the modest space program expense betrays his lack of understanding of not only science but economics also

  110. Nikhil   November 5, 2013 at 10:14 am

    You racist , patronizing idiots, Guardian used to be a good newspaper. The next time EU or america launches a space program, I want the headline to read,”NASA begins its moon mission despite failing to manage hurricane relief”. Poverty and space program are unrelated you closet racists.

  111. devilslair   November 5, 2013 at 3:36 am

    James Fenner better do a good home work and address the problems of USA itself before poking others. Sending a probe to Mars or elsewhere is not a copyright of America or Americans and there are plenty of poor in US itself. And the whole world knows about the economical condition of USA right now. So stop preaching and get real.

  112. Bharat   November 5, 2013 at 2:06 am

    This is a ridiculous argument. Removing poverty is highly important but it doesn’t mean that all other programs need to stop. Scientific advancement is important too. $78 million is very less compared the money India spends on its poor. In that sense no country can ever invest in science, as every country has it’s own problems of budget cuts.

  113. Haresh Patel   November 4, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Why is the West not concerned about India’s defense expenditure which is several times larger? Is it because they love sell arms to the whole world and keep the tensions up?
    The space missions may have long term defense aspects because of improvement in rocket technology so if they are not concerned about defense expenditure they should not be concerned about this.

  114. Ramani   November 4, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    The author needs a fact check. At $78 million, India’s Mars mission is the most cost effective ever. Its also bizarre logic to say that you can’t dream big if you have problems. Many Americans are still suffering from the recent recession and Katrina…does that mean NASA should shut its doors and not invest in the future? Just congratulate them on a job well done!

  115. Ramani   November 4, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    At $78 million, this is the most cost effective mars mission to date. And there is poverty in Europe as well, with youth unemployment rates touching 50% in some countries…does that mean EU stops investing in the future? I think you should give credit where it is due, and congratulate ISRO on a job well done, instead of sounding like sour grapes…

  116. Sanjay   November 4, 2013 at 8:51 am

    Remember that old saying:

    If you teach a man to fish, he’ll eat for a day. If you teach a man to send a spaceship to Mars, he’ll figure out how to feed everybody.