Namaste, @MarsOrbiter! Congratulations to @ISRO and India's
first interplanetary mission upon achieving Mars orbit.
handle (@MarsCuriosity) of NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover, already on the Red
Planet since August 2012, tweeted today to congratulate ISRO’s Mars Orbiter
Mission (@MarsOrbiter) on successfully reaching the Mars Orbit this morning
after over 300 days of journey. Launched on November 5 last year under India's
Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), the Orbiter had left the Earth's Orbit on December
1 to a Mars-bound journey.
achievement came with the words for the next stop on India’s roadmap for space
exploration with ISRO tweeting its intention to launch its Rover on the Moon
soon, with its second lunar mission, Chandrayaan-II, after the successful
Chandrayaan-I of 2008.
And they will do
it with more style and substance, irrespective of the debates and the counterpoints
that other giants (read the USSR, the USA and the European Space Agency)
reached Mars and Moon decades earlier, and that will again be a milestone
Every big and
small country, willing and investing in, is in the space race and Sun, Mars and
Moon are the evergreen subjects, no matter if Mars and Moon were mapped decades
Orbiter, built at almost 10 times the cost of Mangalyaan, started orbiting Mars
on Sunday. China's similar attempt failed in 2011. Japan also saw failure in
1999. And there will be more attempts in the future.
India’s scientific might in the space exploration has been trendsetter and
exemplary for the developing nations given the budgetary constraints. It
becomes even more appreciable when we see it in the context of the extended periods
of sanctions on high-end technology import and collaboration from the developed
Western world owing to its nuclear tests.
scientists have excelled in spite of the nagging constraints. India is
undoubtedly a space power and no one but its scientific community can claim the
legacy for it. Like its missile programme, its space quest has also been
largely original. In fact, the Mars Orbiter Mission is totally indigenous, from
concept to design to production to launch to final implementation today, all in
just 15 months, and in the maiden attempt, and India is the first country to do
And with it, the
Indian scientists have scaled up the nation higher in the ranking of the select
group of elite space powers.
Research Organization or ISRO’s Mars Obiter Mission or Mangalyaan has indeed
come as a scientific triumph with many firsts for the scientific community of
the country and with its frugal approach, it can prove out to be a
cost-effective model of space exploration for further scientific quests and can
motivate many other countries to collaborate with the Indian scientific
jubilation. And the celebrations are in the air. And it was good to see them
being the talking points with their voices and faces inhabiting the media
spaces for some days now and it was expected to continue today, and even
What is heartening
that another big newsbreak today, of the Supreme Court cancelling all coal
blocks allocated since 1993 (except four), couldn’t take away the space the
scientists, Mangalyaan and ISRO deserved. Kudos!
Otherwise, who had,
in the mainstream media, the space for names like A S Kiran Kumar, V Adimurthy,
B S Chandrashekar, Mylswamy Annadurai, P Robert, Subbiah Arunan, V Kesavaraju, P
Ekambaram, P Kunhikrishnan, S K Shivkumar, V Koteswara Rao, B Jayakumar, the
people who formed the core of the Mangalyaan team along with the ISRO chairman
K Radhakrishnan. The nation knew who was K Radhakrishnan but very few knew who
all others were, working for months to make the mission a winning event.
refreshing to see the media and the nation talking about them, sharing the
screen space of prominence in spite of the high stake political events like
run-up to the Narendra Modi's US visit or the volatile Maharashtra's political
alliance talks involving Congress, NCP, BJP and Shiv Sena or the Supreme Court
cancelling all the coal blocks allocated since 1993.
scientific community has the ability to give us many more such moments. Indian
scientists have done wonders across the globe and imagine what they can do in
India if they get in terms of resources what their counterparts in the US or in
Europe or even in China get.
Photo Courtesy @MarsOribter