FROM V.V. RAMAN, EMERITUS PROFESSOR OF PHYSICS AND HUMANITIES AT THE ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY: Last Wednesday, India launched its first unmanned rocket whose destination is the moon, the celestial body that has been chanted in the Vedas, visualized in Hindu myths, and worshiped in rituals. It will forever be a memorable day in the history of India.
Without diluting the reverence and poetry associated with the moon, Indian scientists calculated its orbit and position relative to Earth, and basing themselves on the knowledge and information derived from modern science, they used today’s technology to shoot for the moon. This not only filled a billion Indian hearts with pride and a sense of achievement, but also showed the world that India is a complex and multifaceted country where astrologers evaluate the influence of the moon on human life and the stock market, while no-nonsense scientists set up projects to map the lunar surface.
India deserves to be congratulated on this spectacular accomplishment, not only by well-wishers, but also by those who respect the positive contributions of science and technology.