New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday addressed the nation from the ISRO control centre in Bengaluru, in the backdrop of Chandrayaan-2’s lander ‘Vikram’ losing contact with ground control around 2.1 km from the lunar surface.
Notably, ISRO’s plan to soft-land Chandrayaan-2’s Vikram module on the lunar surface did not go as per script in the early hours of Saturday, with the Vikram lander losing communication with ground stations during its final descent.
Vikram’s descent was as planned and normal performance was observed up to an altitude of 2.1 km. Subsequently, communication from Vikram Lander to the ground stations was lost, Isro said, adding that data was being analysed.
Speaking to disappointed ISRO scientists, PM Narendra Modi, who flew into Bengaluru on Friday night to watch the planned touch-down of Vikram, said, “There are ups and downs in life. This is not a small achievement. The nation is proud of you. Hope for the best. I congratulate you. You all have done a big service to the nation, science and mankind. I am with you all the way, move forward bravely.”
Encouraging them further, the Prime Minister in a tweet stated,”India is proud of our scientists! They’ve given their best and have always made India proud. These are moments to be courageous, and courageous we will be! Chairman @isro gave updates on Chandrayaan-2. We remain hopeful and will continue working hard on our space programme.” Later he also interacted with students and answered their questions.
Meanwhile, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi congratulated ISRO, calling the passion and dedication of the scientists an inspiration to the masses. “Congratulations to the team at ISRO for their incredible work on the Chandrayaan 2 Moon mission. Your passion and dedication is an inspiration to every Indian. Your work is not in vain. It has laid the foundation for many more path-breaking and ambitious Indian space missions,” Gandhi tweeted.
Home Minister Amit Shah also showered praise on ISRO saying its achievement with getting Chandrayaan-2 so far has made every Indian proud. “India stands with our committed and hard-working scientists at ISRO. My best wishes for future endeavours” tweeted Shah.
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) had described the 15-minute descent towards the Moon as ’15 minutes of terror’. ISRO broadcasted the landing mission from 1:10 am on September 7 on various websites and platforms including YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.