As per reports, Fawad Chaudhry, the Pakistan Minister for Science and Technology, took a jibe at India's Chandrayaan 2 and said that he spacecraft from a debt-ridden country is a mere toy.
This has irked the Indians from across the world and many have criticized his remarks. Here let us have a look at the space programme owned by Pakistan.
Pakistan's National Space Agency SUPARCO (Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission), was set up in 1961 and it took them almost 50 years to launch their first communications satellite into the orbit and this was achieved by using a Chinese-made launch vehicle.
They also had to take help from China Aerospace and Technology Corporation. The agency was established almost 8 years before ISRO, and ISRO has so far created various records by sending 104 satellites into space in a single go in the year 2017. At the same time, the space agency of Pakistan has always experienced a series of failures and setbacks.
It has been 58 years since SUPARCO has been established and so far, they have been denied the required funding and resources that are needed for a sustained rate of innovation and advancement. The agency faced its first major downfall during the 1980s and 1990s when their funding for ongoing projects was cut off by the then President Zia-ul-Haq. One of their major projects during that period was the flagship satellite communication launch.
Fawad Chaudhry has recently announced that Pakistan would be launching its first manned spaced mission by 2022 and this claim has been considered to be ridiculed. We should also take the fact that there are only a few universities in Pakistan that offer aeronautical engineering courses and the scientific research institutes are also very less. Fawad made his comments about Chandrayaan 2 on his Twitter account and he even wrongly spelled the word "satellite".