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Seemingly unfazed at being ousted from the Asian Athletics Association, scam-tainted Suresh Kalmadi on Monday said losing the presidential re-election bid to Qatar’s Dahlan Jumaan Al-Hamad has actually given him a chance to work at the “grassroots” level.
“I have no issues today and I congratulate Mr Al-Hamad for being elected as President. I am rather relieved that I will be able to work at the grassroots level in athletics,” Mr. Kalmadi said after losing the vote during the ongoing AAA Congress in Pune.

National News

Pranab Mukherjee to witness PSLV-C20 launch

Monday - Feb 25, 2013, 02:40pm (GMT+5.5)
[+] Text [-]

Chennai - President Pranab Mukherjee is expected to witness the launching of the Indo-French satellite 'SARAL', aimed at oceanographic studies, and six other foreign mini and micro satellites from ISRO's workhorse rocket PSLV from the Sriharikota spaceport today.

The Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C20) is slated for blast-off at 5.56 p.m. from the first launch pad of Satish Dhawan Space Centre, 110 kms from here.

This is the 23rd mission of PSLV. It has an impeccable record of 21 consecutive successful flights. This is the ninth time ISRO is using the 'core alone' variant of the rocket.

The 668.5 kgs and 44.4 metres tall rocket will have a lift off mass of 229.7 tonnes. Besides SARAL, it would put into orbit two micro-satellites UniBRITE and BRITE from Austria and AAUSAT3 from Denmark and STRAND from United Kingdom as also one micro-satellite (NEOSSat) and one mini-satellite (SAPPHIRE) from Canada.

ISRO had initially planned to launch SARAL on December 12 last year, but postponed it to carry out additional tests to "address technical issues to ensure reliability".

The ISRO-built SARAL is a 410-kg satellite with payloads -- Argos and Altika -- from French space agency CNES for study of ocean parameters towards enhancing the understanding of the ocean state conditions which are otherwise not covered by the in-situ measurements.

In view of the expected presence of the President, the Satish Dhawan Space Centre has been put under a thick net of security, officials said.


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