IN what could be described as a landmark in India's aeronautics and space industry, it successfully launched its first unmanned moon spacecraft Chandrayaan 1 on Wednesday. It would stay in the orbit for two years, collecting vital information like the detection of water and exploring other elements on the lunar surface. The project that cost $80 million would enable India to join the race for advanced space technology among regional powers like China and Japan, which have already been sending probe missions to the moon. However, it is the military significance of the programme that should be a source of alarm for us. The type of technology Chandrayaan 1 is built with could also enable it to be used for spying purposes, assisting ground forces and mapping areas for strategic purposes. Similarly, Its technology can be used to build space-based weapons like anti-satellite missiles etc. These are just some of the security implications Islamabad cannot afford to turn a blind eye to. Some would be viewing the development as part of India's concerns and its efforts to rival China in every field, be it economic or military. However, the fact is that our handicap in space science would put us at great disadvantage and have severe repercussions when seen in the light of India's overt designs to bring us down to our knees. Our space programme and most importantly research institutions pale into insignificance when compared with others'. Since a lot is at stake concerted effort is needed to develop them. Besides, India would enjoy commercial and medical advantages from the advancement of the project. Pakistan is working out an indigenous moon satellite programme but given the lack of resources, it would be a long while before we could launch an unmanned lunar mission.