Mangalyaan spacecraft success makes us proud, say Indians in Oman



“Proud to be an Indian. Kudos to Indian scientists…” these were the short messages forwarded to cellphones and uploaded on social networking sites by Indians in Oman within a few minutes after Mangalyaan spacecraft successfully entered orbit around the Red Planet after a 10-month journey at 5:47 AM (Oman Time).

India now joins an elite club of the United States, Russia and Europe who can boast of reaching Mars.

The 3,000 pound Mars satellite has reportedly cost $75 million and 18 months to build. It is only the fourth mission to enter the Martian orbit, following probes from the United States, Russia and the European space agency. 

The darling of Martian dreamers – American rover Curiosity, which has been sitting on the surface of the Red Planet – costed over $2 billion.

“The success of India’s Mars Orbiter Mission or ‘Mangalyaan’ is a matter of great pride. It underscores the scientific calibre and technological prowess of our scientists, engineers and technicians. It reinforces India’s position as an emerging scientific and economic power with exceptional human resources for innovation and achievement,” JS Mukul, the Indian ambassador to the Sultanate, wrote in an email to Times of Oman.

The Mars Orbiter Mission, India’s first interplanetary mission was launched by India’s workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle from the spaceport of Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh on November 5, 2013.

“It is a proud moment for every Indian. It will help India to widen its horizon in space technology. The success of the mission will be boost to the upcoming generation,” G. Madhavan Nair, the former chairman of ISRO, told Times of Oman over phone from India.

Mangalyaan will circle the planet for six months as its instruments gather data, including measuring the presence of methane gas, a marker of life on the planet.

“The success of the mission will help India to open up new avenues in space technology, especially in astronomy. Moreover, this success will help to boost many side technologies in the industrial sector,” Dr C Ramachandran Prabhu, a Physics faculty member at Higher College of Technology in Muscat, said.

“The mission could be a turning point as India can now market its status as a low-cost base for sophisticated engineering,” Prabhu added.

The satellite has covered 670 million kilometres to reach Mars.

“It is a proud moment for all Indians. We thank everyone who was involved directly and indirectly in the project. Indian scientists have proved that they can successfully complete the mission, which requires perfect timing and technology,” Sivashankara Pillai, vice chairman of Science India Forum in Oman, said.

For the last 10 years, Science India Forum is organising science fest for Indian school students to generate more interest in science and technology among them.

An anchor with CNBC TV18 for almost 4 years. Also co-anchors prime-time market shows like Power Breakfast, Traders only, Markets Mid-day and NSE Closing Bell.