Chennai: It is not just India’s moon lander which is on the moon now, but also the Indian space agency officials -- those involved in the Chandrayaan-3 mission and those not.
The entire set of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) officials at the Mission Operations Complex at ISRO Telemetry, Tracking and Command Network (ISTRAC) in Bengaluru led by ISRO Chairman S Somanath who were glued to their monitors got up and clapped when the moon lander safely and softly landed on the lunar soil in a text-book style.
All were seen beaming with a great sense of relief and more so Somanath, whose name means the Master of Moon.
“People wanted us to succeed. The ISRO’s Chandrayaan-3 project team has put in tremendous effort. They have been breathing Chandrayaan-3 for the past four years,” M Shankaran, Director, U R Rao Satellite Centre, said after India landed on the moon.
Shankaran also said the Chandrayaan-3 team was supported by teams in navigation, propulsion and others.
According to him, the bar has now gone up, as the success has put higher responsibility on them.
“The entire mission happened flawlessly and on time. India is also the first country in the world to go near the moon’s South Pole,” said P Veeramuthuvel, Project Director, Chandrayaan-3.
Referring to the safe landing of the moon lander, Associate Project Director Kalpana said it was the most remarkable and happiest moment for the Chandrayaan-3 team.
She added that all the goals that were set have been achieved after the team built Chandrayaan-3 learning from the failure of Chandrayaan-2.
It may be recalled that the Vikram lander that was part of the Chandrayaan-2 mission crashed on the moon while it was on the last phase of landing a couple of years ago.
On that day, then ISRO Chairman K Sivan was literally in tears and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had come to witness the landing, had to console the former.
But on Wednesday, the ISRO officials' mood was diametrically opposite.
What was more interesting was Somanath's attitude. Instead of monopolising the mike time after the landing success, he cut short his speech and allowed the team members to talk.
The Master of Moon - Somanath - showed he is also a Master Manager.