NEW DELHI: Amidst the jubilation surrounding the historic achievement of Chandrayaan-3’s lunar landing at the Moon’s South Pole, the narratives of unsung heroes who played a pivotal role within the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) are emerging as a wellspring of motivation for future generations. The tireless dedication of these ISRO scientists has undeniably propelled India to the forefront of lunar exploration, a testament to the nation’s technological prowess and steadfast commitment to scientific advancement.
Among these trailblazers is Bharat Kumar, a young man hailing from the unassuming town of Charouda in Chhattisgarh. While his name might not be widely recognized, his journey is nothing short of extraordinary. Born into a financially modest family, Bharat’s father worked as a bank security guard, while his mother managed a humble tea stall.
The story of his ascent was shared by an individual named Aaraynsh, with a verified handle on the micro-blogging platform X (formerly Twitter).
There is a small town called Charouda in Chhattisgarh, unfamiliar to most of us, there lived a boy named Bharat. He belongs to a weak financial family. His father worked as a security guard at a bank and his mother ran a tea stall
Bharat’s educational path took him to Kendriya Vidyalaya Charouda, where his tenacity shone through. Despite financial constraints, he pursued his studies with vigour. The school extended its support by waiving his fees during the 9th grade. His diligence bore fruit, leading him to excel in the 12th grade and eventually secure a spot at IIT Dhanbad.
However, the financial challenges resurfaced. It was at this juncture that the business figures Arun Bagh and the Jindal Group from Raipur stepped in, providing the assistance he needed. Bharat’s academic journey continued to thrive, culminating in a remarkable achievement—a gold medal with an outstanding 98% score from IIT Dhanbad.
In a remarkable turn of events, during his 7th semester of engineering studies, Bharat’s talents caught the attention of ISRO. At the age of 23, he was given the opportunity to contribute to the Chandrayaan-3 mission.
His story stands as a living embodiment of the adage “rising from the ashes like a phoenix.” Bharat Kumar is not alone in his journey. Numerous individuals like him, hailing from modest backgrounds in small towns, are driving the dream of a new India forward each day.
Here are the other visionaries behind ISRO’s lunar triumph:
S Somanath, ISRO Chairman: Taking the helm in January 2022, S Somanath has emerged as a driving force behind India’s ambitious lunar pursuits. With a background in rocket technology development, his leadership has propelled missions like Chandrayaan-3, Aditya-L1 (Sun exploration), and Gaganyaan (India’s maiden manned mission) to success. His expertise encompasses launch vehicle system engineering, architecture, propulsion, and integration.
P Veeramuthuvel, Chandrayaan-3 Project Director: Heading the Chandrayaan-3 project since 2019, P Veeramuthuvel, a PhD holder from IIT Madras, has become a linchpin of the mission. Hailing from Tamil Nadu’s Villupuram district, his resolute leadership and previous roles, including Deputy Director at ISRO’s Space Infrastructure Programme Office, have been instrumental.
S Unnikrishnan Nair, Director of VSSC: Leading VSSC in Kerala, S Unnikrishnan Nair played a pivotal role in developing GSLV Mark-III. His meticulous oversight and guidance have greatly contributed to the success of Chandrayaan-3.
M Sankaran, Director of URSC: Assuming leadership in 2021, M Sankaran guides URSC in crafting diverse satellites that cater to India’s communication, navigation, remote sensing, and planetary exploration needs. URSC’s contributions play a vital role in India’s satellite endeavours.
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