India Prime Minister Narendra Modi, said on Wednesday that India has become the first nation to have successfully reached Mars on its maiden attempt.
He announced from the headquarters of the state-owned space agency in the southern city of Bangalore, that with 74 million dollars, the cheapest inter-planetary mission ever to be undertaken, an historic feat was made for the country’s indigenous space programme.
“India has reached Mars, history has been created, we are the only country to have succeeded in its first attempt,” he said.
Mr. Modi said that the success was an indication that India was a country full of determination to succeed.
“We have made it a habit of achieving the impossible. Humanity would not have progressed if we had not taken such leaps into the unknown and space is the biggest unknown out there,” he said.
Mr. Modi said that Mars has got its Mars Orbiter Mission, MOM, and the moment it was named MOM, he knew it would not disappoint.
He commended the efforts of the scientists of Indian Space Research Organisation, ISRO, for the laudable achievements.
“You have inspired our future generation, in spite of our many limitations, we aspired for the best and the success of our space programme has been an example of our achievement,” he said.
Mr. Modi said ISRO joined an elite group of only three other agencies worldwide to have successfully reached the Red Planet.
“India has now joined the U.S. the European Space Agency and the former Soviet Union in the elite club of Martian explorers,” he said.
He said MOM was launched in November last year by placing its mission in Mars orbit.