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Embarking into space
Though no immediate ASAT tests by Indian experts are in the offing, the Chinese ASAT tests conducted twice has seriously engaged Indian strategic establishment.
 
After US and the then Soviet Union took the lead in developing and deploying anti–satellite weapons in mid eighties China shook the world with its anti–satellite weapon test in 2007 and repeated it despite international outcry.
 
India being a developing country has been focusing till now on the peaceful uses of space technology. However, the capacities and infrastructure developed has given the country the necessary strength to embark on the anti-satellite weapon technology.
 
Unlike nuclear field India has been getting cooperation from various countries like Russia and European Union, especially France, to help launch satellite which has enabled India to improve the qualitative life of the people and providing electronic connectivity to more than a billion population.
 
Anti-satellite weapon
 
Though India’s space programme was an open book India always remained under official embargo from US. However India has now developed capacities to launch its own low-earth and geo-stationary satellites, not to say about the scores of polar satellites which include satellites for military purposes.
 
As India now proudly calls itself a moon faring nation, developing and deploying an anti satellite weapon should not be a far cry and technically difficult proposition for India.
 
The Indian Air Force which has been clamoring for aerospace capabilities since mid nineties, now been permitted to run an aerospace cell to plan about the future, is closely interacting with the DRDO and Indian Space Research Organisation to work on possible shape  and conceptualization of  anti satellite weapon system.
 
In fact, the IAF has been focusing great deal of effort on network centric warfare which is intricately connected to space based satellites. An aerospace command is also in the offing to assist the three armed forces enhance the quick decision making capacity.  
 
As India’s economy and lifeline depends on space based satellites similar to the capacities achieved by other developed counties these have also become vulnerable to attack by an arrogant power.
 
Though the defence planners were aware of the necessity of acquiring such space based capacities long back the urgency for this was felt only three years ago after China created a big furor with its anti satellite test and US following it up by testing similar systems more than two decades after its first anti satellite test.
 
When Dr Saraswat commented that “India had all the building blocks necessary” to integrate an anti satellite weapon to neutralize an enemy satellite in Low Earth and Polar Orbits, the strategic community took him seriously.
 
But it is still doubtful whether a dedicated development programme for deployment of an anti–satellite weapon has been initiated. However what Dr Saraswat said gives enough confidence to planners and concerned people that India has the ability to deploy such systems both in space and on the ground to retaliate.
 
Dr Saraswat had told that India was developing lasers and an-exo atmospheric kill vehicle that could be combined to produce a weapon to destroy a hostile satellite in space. The only requirement was to develop a kill vehicle on which Indian missile scientists are working as a part of anti–ballistic missile system.
 
As the world strategic community is keeping a close watch on India’s Ballistic Missile Defence programme and countries like US and Russia have already offered such systems to India, Indian missile scientists are confident to go ahead on their own.
 
The American defence companies had offered this system after 9/11 terrorist attack. Indian government and the missile scientists have been engaging with the Pentagon on the BMD system but simultaneously also working on indigenous programme.