Thursday, September 25, 2014

Mangalyaan- Amazing success story which can inspire entire nation.

India's successful completion of Mars orbiter mission (MOM) or Mangalyaan is an amazing success story which should inspire every citizen to think big and dream big. India became the first Asian country to do so and first country in the world to do it in first attempt. They achieved it with very tidy budget of 75 million USD, one can compare it with the budget of recently released Hollywood blockbuster film 'Gravity', which was ~125 million. So this achievement is very significant as it was achieved with very limited financial resources and in such a short span of time. This success story is no doubt a golden page in history of ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization). One can surely debate whether India can afford to spend so much money on such project when millions of its citizens live below poverty line, but for me this is not the subject of discussion here. This question should be asked when political parties spend millions of dollars of unaccounted money for their election campaign, they spend lavishly for ministers accommodations, their foreign trips or building memorials for their beloved leaders, for unrecoverable money of hundreds of scams during every government rule, etc. There are many occasions and incidents where this question will be relevant but I think this is not a appropriate question for this occasion. But I am sure that this question will be asked and will be debated widely in electronic and print media as well as on many blogs.

I think everyone from India will agree that there is no dearth of talent in India. Actually we produce so many talented people that many of them leave the country as they don't find suitable opportunities which can utilize their talent properly. Brain drain is a constant problem for India's talent pool. Because of lack of proper opportunities many people look for jobs outside India, some willingly and some unwillingly leave their motherland for search of better opportunities. According to me these type of achievements have great symbolic importance also, they have potential to inspire entire nation. These type of events can act as a catalyst to instil confidence in youth that they can dream big and those dreams can be achieved in their own country. I am glad to see the nationwide excitement over this success.

Even though this is not a political issue, concerned political parties are bound to make an effort to gain some political mileage out of this event. Actually such occasions are an opportunity to show bipartisan national pride by all political parties but unfortunately this doesn't happen in India even on such occasions. Former prime minister Dr. Manmohan Singh dared to fund such a ambitious project, he announced about it during his independence day speech in 2012. This was not result of some overnight effort or one man leadership. It took two years of hard work of many scientists and people supporting them to make it successful. ISRO scientists need to be congratulated for their tireless efforts and dedication. So the credit should be given to former UPA government for their efforts. We all including their political opponents don't hesitate to blame them wherever we feel they made a mistake so we also should not hesitate to give them a credit whenever it is due. It will be very unfortunate if we see any political fight over Mangalyaan legacy. I think Dr. Manmohan Singh and his team needs to get standing ovation for this achievement. At the same time great vision of Dr. Vikram Sarabhai and many other scientists which believed that India can run a successful space research program should also be applauded.

Hopefully this success story doesn't stop here, hopefully this type of efforts and success get replicated in other areas also. Country with such great talent and natural resources can achieve a lot if it can utilize its resources properly. I want to end this post by congratulating all people (including scientific and non scientific staff) involved in this project, you all did a great job and deserve all the praise you are getting, thank you very much for your efforts.

Thanks for reading and please share your views on this topic.

[Copyright : Vinay Thakur. Please contact the author for re-posting or publishing]

2. Mangalyaan: India's race for space success


  1. This is a remarkable achievement, Vinay, and indeed a very good confidence-booster especially for those in India who feel that the country lacks opportunities. India has proved, time and again, that it has the talent and the resources to achieve such feats. Yes, as you said, one can argue that if India has so much money to spend then why not utilise it for the betterment of the poor and the needy. But what surprised me more was the fact that some people began consulting their astrologers as to whether such a mission to Mars is an "auspicious" event given that Mars (i.e. Mangal) is astrologically considered to be an "inauspicious" planet !!

    1. The stigma associated with "Mangal" or "Mangalik" is huge in Indian society, many people still match horoscopes before marriage, as long as this system is there such incidents will keep on happening. We need to get rid of these superstitions completely to avoid any such incidents, may be it will happen one day but right now it seems such nonsense will continue.