As a country with scientific temperament as its core value, we understand that setbacks in a scientific experiment are as important outcome as success. Such hurdles in space missions are indeed very common given the scale and nature of the endeavor. Even the iconic Apollo program of NASA is no exception to such risk exposure. It’s worth re-calling the great tragedy that occurred on 27 Jan 1967, which not only delayed the program but also led to the human loss of all crew members in a fire accident during pre-flight test of Apollo 1. Even after the successful launch of Apollo 11, third landing attempt of Apollo 13 again faced significant setback with crew members having to use the life boats to return to earth.
China on the other hand, went on to create a history by sending a solar powered Yutu Rover – a solar powered robot to lunar surface. After a successful landing, Yutu could just survive for one lunar night before it developed technical malfunctions and eventually perished in lunar dust prematurely. But this has not deterred their space agency from Chang'e-4, 5, 6, 7 with subsequent lunar probes.
Similarly, the setback of our moon mission Chandrayan 2 will only be temporary. ISRO team like always, will crack this hurdle like a piece of cake and rise stronger than ever. On the sidelines, those who have blamed PM Modi of stealing credit from ISRO for its achievements earlier have been totally destroyed with PM himself standing as core source of strength in the need of the hour. So, let’s add to the strength of our own ISRO as they continue to make us shine in space exploration.
Anugula Rakesh Reddy
(The Author is BJP Telangana State Official Spokesperson, Economist and Director, Center for Leadership and Governance)