Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday morning interacted with students from across the country who were at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Centre in Bengaluru to witness the historic event. A student asked PM Modi to give him tips to become the President of India, in reply Modi asked him why doesn't he aim to become the Prime Minister instead. As many as 60 high school students had cleared an online space quiz to witness the soft landing of Chandrayaan 2 on the moon.
Communication from Chandrayaan 2’s ‘Vikram’ lander to ground station was lost during its powered descent to the Lunar surface in the early hours of Saturday and data is being analysed. "Vikram lander descent was as planned and normal performance was observed up to an altitude of 2.1 km. Subsequently, the communications from lander to ground station was lost," ISRO Chairman K Sivan said. Morale boosting messages poured in from various quarters for ISRO as several leaders asked the space agency not to get disheartened.
Launched on July 22, Chandrayaan-2 entered the Moon's orbit on 20 August, a month after take-off. The touchdown of Vikram lander was scheduled between 1:30 am and 2:30 am, followed by the rollout of its rover named ‘Pragyaan’ between 5:30 am and 6.30 am. Chandrayaan-2 was the most complex mission ever attempted by the India's space agency. Had the landing gone as planned, India would have become the first country to the land a mission on the south pole of the Moon.
The 3,84,000 km journey that began on July 22 at Sriharikota launchpad was supposed to culminate with the soft-landing.In case of successful touchdown, ISRO was supposed to deploy the three payloads, named Chaste, Rambha and Ilsa. Chandrayaan-2, launched on July 22 by GSLV MkIII-M1 vehicle, had entered the Lunar Transfer Trajectory on August 14 after final orbit raising manoeuvre of the spacecraft was successfully carried out. According to ISRO, Lunar South Pole’s region has traces of hydrogen, ammonia, methane, sodium, mercury and silver making it an untapped source of essential resources.