The fresh launch date will be announced later, said a spokesman of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).

Nearly two hours before the scheduled blast off at 4.50 pm while the cryogenic engine was being fuelled up, scientists and officials at the mission control center suddenly became excited and were huddled in a series of discussions.

"We are calling off the launch of GSLV D-5 due to fuel leakage. So, there will be no launch today," ISRO chairman K Radhakrishnan announced at a press conference.

"The vehicle will be moved to the assembly building. We will assess the data and find out the cause for the fuel leakage," he said.

Space scientists in the mission control center gathered in small groups around some monitors. The countdown was put on hold for some time and an emergency meeting of scientists was called and a decision was taken to hold the launch.

(Agencies)

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