Bengaluru: All Indians eyeing the Chandrayaan-2 mission became ecstatic when the Vikram lander began its final descent towards the moon at 1.45 am on 7th September. The last 15 minutes of the journey were said to be terrifying. However, the Vikram lander lost contact with the ground station just 3 minutes and 2.1 kilometres before the touchdown on the lunar surface. The whole country was drowned in disappointment at the moment. But within a few minutes, messages congratulating ISRO started pouring in from across the country. Prime Minister Narendra Modi who was present at the ISRO headquarters, praised the ISRO journey, so far, as spectacular and bold and assured it was not a failure.
The Vikram lander, which was travelling at 21,600 kilometres per hour had to reduce its speed to 7 kilometres per hour in the last 15 minutes. Describing this as the final stage, ISRO Chief K. Sivan had warned that these previous minutes would be horrifying. The Vikram lander initiated the stage perfectly and out of 15, 12 minutes went smooth according to the plan. Immediately after, the Vikram lander lost all its communication with the orbiter and the ground control station. Just a few seconds before this, the lander reportedly went off track. Later, the ISRO scientists stepped up efforts to re-establish communication, but none of the efforts received a response.
Prime Minister Modi wholeheartedly praised the disappointed ISRO scientists. Prime Minister asserted, “There is no failure in science; it has only experiments. Today we might have faced an obstacle, but we will not stop short of attaining the goal.” Prime Minister consoled the ISRO scientists saying, “The ISRO scientists striving hard for this project have had many sleepless nights. The whole country is proud of you and is standing behind you.”
ISRO Chief K. Sivan said that the assuring words of the Prime Minister had given us new energy. Furthermore, he said that the ISRO scientists are still trying to establish communication with Vikram lander, which can be restored. At the same time, although the lander has failed, the mission has not. Orbiter, Lander and Rover were three parts of the mission. Of which, the orbiter will continue to remain in the lunar orbit for the next seven and a half years and will keep sending valuable information and photographs regarding the moon, clarified the ISRO Chief.