A Broken Dream - Chandrayaan 2 Skip to main content

A Broken Dream - Chandrayaan 2

I remember the day when Chandrayaan 2 was set to launch. My friend had left for Sri Harikota to watch it live in front of his eyes. It was a big event. Bigger than Chandrayaan 1. I was watching it live too. But, 56 minutes before the launch, ISRO decided to postpone the mission due to some technical glitch. Chandrayaan 2 was finally launched on 22 July 2019. I watched a lot of videos and read a lot about the mission. Its history, mechanics, trajectory, almost everything I could find. It was a big event for India and certainly a big event for the world. It is not that easy to reach the moon. I mean, you can just figure it out by seeing that only three countries have been there. India could have been the fourth.





Every time something Chandrayaan 2 did, it got reflected in the foreign media. Look, India's lunar mission Chandrayaan 2 has entered Earth's orbit. Look, India's lunar mission Chandrayaan 2 has exited the orbit. Look, India's developed Chandrayaan 2 has entered the lunar orbit and many more. Chandrayaan 2 status was seen by the world. Like me, the whole country was as excited as the neighbouring countries were jealous. We all were waiting for the day when Pragyan would walk out of Vikram and will print the words ISRO and the image of the state emblem of India on the lunar soil. The day was 7th September 2019.




I am at my college's hostel room when my friend comes to my room and asks a question. It is 6 pm and I have a test tomorrow but in mind, something else is going on. The notification I received on my phone 2 hours earlier about the time of Chandrayaan 2 landing is something I am more excited about. Actually, the whole country was. I told a lot of guys and it was expected that everyone knew about that. It was a proud moment of being an Indian. I googled Chandrayaan 2 status a few times in between to get the updates. ISRO Chandrayaan 2 was quite active on the twitter regarding the mission and so was our prime minister. "Watch the live telecast of Vikram landing on the moon from 1 am onwards". Tests will be every week, this is a one-time thing I am witnessing and will stand as a witness to the generations to come.



Its 12 am. I and my roommate both have tuned to the live telecast on different links. Nothing is showing up except the message "Live telecast will start at 1 am". I left the web page as it is and started doing my own work. Finally, it was time to see some action. ISRO office is live on the internet and you can see all the scientists who have worked so hard on the mission. They are tensed. It was the result time. The same countenance as you have when the results are about to announce and you are typing the web address to see your results. ISRO Chandrayaan 2 was a dream. I keep my notebook aside as soon as I see the visuals on my screen. I hear a loud cheer from ISRO. Something happened. A breaking event on the lander. It has executed successfully. Although there are no visuals of the moon on the screen just the numbers and stats, it is still so exciting to see the country cheer up for one same thing. Everyone is awake and stuck to TV as if it is the final cricket match of India. Three cheers and three events executed successfully. The velocity has come down from around 1000m/s to 35m/s. The expected trajectory marked by red on the screen is overlapped by the current taken trajectory by the lander. Everything is going as planned. Then, suddenly, when everyone was enjoying and cheering up, the trajectory makes a sudden deflection and the communication breaks.





I did not take it as a serious problem. Communication breaks and joins all the time. In fact, none of the scientists looks tensed. But, the time passed slowly and the announcement is, "still awaiting response". A few moments later, a person from ISRO announces on the microphone, "Please Recheck Signal", to which the response is announced as "Negative Response". All the scientists are tensed and deep down praying to see a green signal on the screen. But unfortunately, the screen never lit to green. The lander never communicated again and everyone's dream has been broken. India has lost that cricket match. The whole world was watching us and looking up to us. But the scene was heartbreaking. Actually, India is not used to expecting failure. We achieve everything on the first attempt. I think the hopes were too high. The scientists' face looked just like when your does when the hard work has not paid off. ISRO chief cried on the shoulders of the prime minister. Chandrayaan 2 mission has failed after coming so close to the moon. I could recall the scene from Apollo 13 movie when Tom Hanks is so close to the moon and he hears the announcement as, "Abort Mission". He imagines himself on the moon. So did the whole country. It was heartbreaking. I waited till 3:30 for the lander to communicate. I was hoping the next second the signal would come. Or the next second. Or the next. Or the next.




I woke up to the sad news that the lander has not communicated yet. The disappointment on the faces of the scientists was something you cannot ignore. Internet is filled with consolation messages and ISRO Chandrayaan news. The whole world is applauding on the mission's success. Yes, everyone is considering it a success. But, who would know the sweet taste of success without knowing the sour taste of failure? The mission was called a success all around the world. It has succeeded but could not complete the task. At least we tried. At least we implemented. At least we did 95% right and reached travelled all the way to the moon till 2.5km were left. We tried so hard. Being an Indian mission two things are definite, we will try again like we all do in our lives and we will not lose the hope for Chandrayaan 2. I opened the Chandrayaan 2 page on Google and it says, "We will try to connect for 14 days". We all are Indians. We never lose hope even if the plan is crashing down. I walked down the stairs. This is something positive. We will succeed. I opened twitter and see a tweet by Shaadi.com which says, "You got more people united than us ISRO. Please teach us the tricks." I smiled and said in my mind, "Quite True!!".

Comments

  1. You have awesome writing skills dude. Let's talk about you writing blogs & stories for my company. As i see your words make the story alive in no time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot Sudhanshu. Lets connect on LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/harishkumarrajora

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular Posts

Visiting Pangong Tso Lake from Nubra Valley - Ladakh Diaries Page 3

Nubra valley in Ladakh was a pleasant scene to stay in. It had an almost white desert, a vociferous river, brown mountains and considerable vegetation which was hard to find in Ladakh. We visited Turtuk the next day which was 2 km from the Pakistan border. We came back the same day and enjoyed live music and a group of travellers who came from Gujarat. They were financed by their company on a yearly holiday. I remember when we went into the hall to eat dinner a man came to us and said "Bikers?" and I said "Yes". His eyed gloomed in the dim light and a smile appeared on his face. An expression that looked like he wanted to switch places with us and kick start a bike and run into the mountains. He lifted his hands and signed a thumbs up towards us.  The next day was a major day as we were about to visit a place that had become a signature location for people visiting Ladakh. Thanks to the movie 3 idiots , the lake Pangong Tso has seen record-breaking footf

A DAY BEFORE LONG NIGHTS - THE LANDING || PART 10

As I mentioned earlier, I was seeing double from the first day till now. My eyes did not improve even a little for many days. Everything I used to see was double. Two doors, two mobile phones, two coffee cups everything. The doctor said my pupils are not moving synchronously as they should and hence you are seeing two images of everything. The images are seen separately by both the eyes but our brain combines it as one, while in your case it is still two images. But, you will be fine with time. With time. This is a very vague sentence. There is no specific maximum limit nor there is any medicine. You will see normally with time. Hence, I waited for " the time ". Two days after I came home after being discharged, I picked up my father's phone, opened chrome browser and typed, GB Syndrome patients case studies . I wanted to know how much time? How everyone else have managed and how much time they took. I needed to know. I needed to be prepared at least. I read three case

Pangong Tso to Leh - Final Chapter - Ladakh Diaries Page 4

The morning in Pangong Tso was the most beautiful morning ever. My window had a perfect view of the lake and between us were green crops and vegetables grown by the locals. It is too far from the world and no vegetable vendor, fruits or anything else come here. You eat what you grow beside your home. The last village was Tangtse which was 30 km back and this was the day we were to move from Pangong Tso to Leh with our bikes. View from the window The sun was shining brightly and the cold wind filled the dry atmosphere with a view of snow that fell last night on the mountains just a few meters above us. I went outside to the door which was already open and the sunlight was coming inside forming a door shape on the floor. Outside was a small dog, white in colour, bombarded by thousands of smells he was sensing here. All these smells made him too excited on this bright day. He had a very short concentration span. He would smell something and a second later run towards another to smell s

The Divided States Of India

As I landed in the city of Bangalore, a man is shouting just outside the airport. He is shouting something that I do not understand. Fortunately, he has learned 4 5 English words. After all, he is standing outside the airport. “ Where, ” he asks. “ Marathahalli ” I spoke. “ Bus 8 ”. He says one word and starts shouting again. He was a bus driver. But most importantly, a resident of Karnataka state in India. Yes, this place is in my country and we both cannot communicate. Many years back when I was in the eighth standard, my textbooks proudly and boldly highlighted the words, “ India is a diverse country ”. They would show the culture and folk dances of each state. Unique on its own. A moment to feel proud. You can never find a country as diverse as India, as culturally rich as India. That was just the textbook. My practical started almost 2 months ago. Soon when I reached my hotel I realized nobody in the hotel knows Hindi. Yes, Hindi. A language spoken in India.

A Day Before Long Nights - The Start of GBS || Part 1

I took my empty bag, I took my jacket, dressed in college uniform I started my ride. I was going to my college to give my final semester presentation for the project I had done in LTI, Mumbai . I was happy about the fact that after today, there will be no exams, no attendance and my college life would be over. I had my days planned. Since I had been on the flight from Mumbai to Delhi to come home, I had planned all my days. I wanted to learn driving at a driving school. I wanted to learn swimming. I wanted to go to the gym. I wanted to go on at least three trips in one month. I had all planned but I guess life had other plans for me.       I gave my presentation to a four-judge panel out of which three were ladies. They were chit-chatting and I don't remember any of them listening to me after I told them the company and brief of the project. My presentation was over as soon as they told me "Thank You". It was a moment of epiphany. My college was over with that s

Leh to Nubra Valley via KhardungLa Pass - Ladakh Diaries Page 2

Finally, the day had arrived that we had long anticipated. Climbing the Ladakh mountains with a motorbike and passing through the top of the world - KhardungLa . The ride should start from Leh and end at Nubra Valley. Around 10 AM, we were ready with our bags tied to the motorbikes and excited to press that self-start button. I had been looking forward to this 40km of ride since we landed in Leh.  KhardungLa has always maintained a special place in people's minds because of its high altitude and a milestone that says " Welcome to the top of the world - the highest motorable pass in the world - KhardungLa ". It feels like an achievement to be passing through a road where people sometimes need oxygen bottles to battle their shortage of breath. Down in Leh, travellers who had completed their circuit and were relaxing for a day warned us about the dangers of that road. In the last two days, we had heard all sorts of stories related to KhardungLa which may or may

Mumbai Life - Experiencing Living In Mumbai

Mumbai as you know is the financial capital of India with big buildings and sky-touching hotels and apartments. But as I know, Mumbai is really more than that. I arrived by August Kranti Rajdhani from New Delhi to Mumbai transitioning from 0 degrees to almost 25 degrees. I had 2 sweaters in my hand and an internship offer letter in my bag which I had to show in LTI ( previously L&T Infotech).  First of all, I was kind of looted at the railway station by the cab driver. Well, let's not say looted but I was charged like uber after finalising a lesser amount before getting into the cab. On the way, I got to know that so called kaali peeli taxi  and the ola-uber taxi have become arch rivals on this land. Well, still I believe that you should not get into those cabs and prefer ola-uber only. They really try to play smart and think they can earn more from Non-Maharashtrian. From that point on, I have been living in Mumbai and I hoped to share my experience of Mumbai life with you all

THE UNTOLD STORY OF A FEW GOOD MEN - KHEERGANGA || Part 2

I climbed to the peak with a dog whose both eyes had different colours. A disease maybe. The scenic beauty of Kheerganga trek is something you cannot miss and would crave for later in your life. It was a hard trek, especially for someone who does not trek regularly. The path was natural, unpaved and quite narrow. At some places, there was no path at all due to the landslide happened just a night before. It was tiresome to climb such a trek for 14 kilometres but I had a companion that I told about in The Untold Story Of A Few Good Men . I reached the top of Kheerganga trek at around 5 in the evening. It was very cold at the peak. Nearly about 12-15 degrees. But thankfully there was a hot spring bath at the top. A hot spring bath is all you need after such a growing latitude. I booked a tent and quickly went for the bath. It was the best. The natural hot water flowing continuously and in the centre of the highest peaks you can see them capped with snow. I spent nearly an hour there

Passing through the top of the world - Ladakh Diaries Page 1

"Do you feel anything?", I asked my friend outside the airport. "Yes", he said. "Like what?" "Like I smoked a joint" This conversation is not regular stuff I ask people when I land every time. This was special. We just landed in Leh by flight. An altitude of 3500 meters is equivalent to the height of Monte leone . A lower oxygen in the air compared to New Delhi and altitude sickness is not surprising at this place. But I had more important things to focus my mind on. The iconic brown mountains that have always been a signature symbol of Ladakh were merely 200 meters from where I was standing. I had not slept for 30 hours but the excitement had overcome sleep in just a few seconds. Zostel was the place we thought of staying at because of the vibes and bachelor culture it exhibits. Zostel is unique. No one cares about what you are doing but if it is something exciting, people will ultimately join you. This introduction is just to create th

Bhutanese Food You Shouldn't Miss If You Are In Bhutan

Bhutan is an adventurous place for all nature lovers. Bhutan provides us with things that very few countries have to offer. A country that has a negative carbon footprint and is the happiest place on earth deserves at least one trip to it. Is Bhutan famous for anything other than its naturistic landscapes? Yes, it's food! Bhutanese food is one of its kind and will remind you of the Tibetan culture that you might have just read in books or watched on television until now. In this post, I bring to you Bhutanese food that you absolutely cannot miss if you are visiting Bhutan! Let's see our specially curated list of Bhutanese food: 1. Ema Datshi We will start our list with one of the most famous Bhutanese dish called Ema Datshi. Ema Datshi is also recognized as the national dish of Bhutan which makes it worth trying when you are visiting Bhutan! So, Ema Datshi is the combination of two words: Ema which means chilli and Datshi which means cheese. Chilli can be of any
Managed and maintained by Harish Rajora