Prime Minister Modi Unveils the Selected Astronauts for the Gaganyaan Mission

Gaganyaan Mission
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The four pilots have been undergoing training at the astronaut training facility in Bengaluru. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced on Tuesday the names of the four pilots selected for the country’s maiden human space flight mission ‘Gaganyaan’. The selected pilots are Group Captain P Balakrishnan Nair, Group Captain Ajit Krishnan, Group Captain Angad Pratap, and Wing Commander S Shukla. Additionally, the PM conferred ‘astronaut wings’ upon the four astronaut-designates.

“I am delighted to have had the opportunity to meet these astronauts and introduce them to the nation. On behalf of the entire country, I extend my heartfelt congratulations to them. You are the pride of today’s India,” PM Modi expressed during his speech.

He continued, “India’s achievements in the space sector are nurturing a scientific spirit among the country’s youth.”

PM Modi, currently on a brief visit to Kerala, toured the Vikram Sarabhai Space Center (VSSC) in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, where he assessed the progress of the Gaganyaan Mission. He was accompanied by Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Union Minister Muraleedharan, and ISRO Chairman S Somanath.

India’s inaugural manned space mission, the Gaganyaan mission, is slated for launch between 2024 and 2025. This ambitious project aims to send a crew of three astronauts into a 400 km orbit for a three-day mission, ensuring their safe return to Earth by landing in Indian sea waters.

According to an ISRO release, the mission’s success is attributed to a strategic blend of in-house expertise, collaboration with Indian industry, leveraging the intellectual capabilities of Indian academia and research institutions, and the adoption of cutting-edge technologies available from international agencies.

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