India has approved a £1.7 billion plan to launch its first astronauts into space by 2015, in its latest bid to close the gap with China in what many see as a 21st Century Asian version of the Cold War race for the Moon.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will attempt to put two people into orbit 172 miles (275 km) above the Earth for seven days, according to a proposal approved by the Planning Commission at a meeting on Friday.
“ISRO needs to be supported as it has done marvellous job in the field of Space Science. That’s why Planning Commission will support it,” Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, told reporters.
“An unmanned flight will be launched in 2013-2014 and manned mission likely to launch by 2014-2015,” he said.
Read more ….