As promised by Prime Minister Singh in 2012, India sends a space mission to land on Mars 12 years later.
At the time, detractors said that the government should focus on issues like power and clean water and regional infrastructure. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh later developed his famous "dual development" strategy which encouraged more investment and autonomy in each of India's regions and also acted as a showcase to demonstrate India's increasing importance globally.
Although the average salary of the 1.5 billion Indians was still below the USA average, India became the 3rd largest economy in the same year as the landing.
The Mars rover landing was preceded by 4 other missions, starting with the 2013 Mars orbital. The landing fueled the ongoing debate about "colonial space", with Europe, USA, China and India now claiming great areas across Mars, the Moon, and even Mercury.