India delayed its Chandrayaan-2 moon launch with less than an hour to go before liftoff. The mission, if successful, would help India's aspirations to catch up with global space leaders the United States and China.

In the early hours of Monday, the flight was called off due to a “technical snag”, with less than an hour to lift off.

India hopes Chandrayaan-2 will be first rocket to land on the Moon's south pole. There they intend to send out a rover to analyse the lunar surface, searching for water and minerals and measuring moonquakes, among other things.

The India Space Research Organisation ISRO said it will announce a revised launch date later. 

The R2 billion mission, if successful, would boost India’s aspirations to catch up with global space leaders United States and China and put it in a better position to compete in the commercial space market, reports Reuters.  

This would be the third attempted moon landing this year after China’s successful Chang’e-4 lunar probe and Israeli spacecraft Beresheet, which failed and crashed on to the moon in April.

On July 16, the world celebrates 50 years since man first landed on the moon with the Apollo 11 mission. 

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