New Delhi, Sept. 9 (ANI): President Pranab Mukherjee on Wednesday presented the Gandhi Peace Prize for the year 2014 to Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) here at a function in Rashtrapati Bhawan.
President Mukherjee congratulated the Indian Space community on ISRO being awarded the coveted Gandhi Peace Prize. He said science and technology are a key driver for shaping the destiny of nations and people across the globe.
“The Gandhi Peace Prize is awarded to individuals and institutions for their contributions towards social, economic and political transformation achieved through non-violence and other Gandhian methods. ISRO today joins the ranks of other eminent institutions such as the Rama Krishna Mission, the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh and the Bhartiya Vidya Bhawan who have been conferred this prestigious award in recent times,” the President said at the fucntion.
“India’s entry into the space arena was led by the visionary scientist, Dr. Vikram Sarabhai who foresaw the tremendous potential of space technology and its applications in addressing the needs of our country’s development. Countering the challenges of scarce resources, limited technical manpower and physical infrastructure in the early years, ISRO has today established operational space systems and services, attained self-reliance in development of indigenous technology and accomplished exemplary feats in space exploration,” he added.
The President said that from a humble beginning, launching small sounding rockets from Thumba for atmospheric studies, ISRO is today one of the six largest space agencies of the world.
“It has built an indigenous Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) which is one of the most sought after launch vehicles in its class across the world. It has achieved 29 successful flights of the PSLV launching not only Indian satellites but also 45 satellites of 19 other countries,” he said.
“The recent launch of five satellites of the United Kingdom marked a new milestone in demonstrating the performance and reliability of the PSLV. ISRO has also successfully built the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) with an indigenous cryogenic engine,” he added.
He also complimented ISRO for designing people centric space programmes to support various national priorities such as food and water security, sustainable environmental practices, conservation of resources, livelihood support, poverty alleviation, rural prosperity, education and health care and disaster management amongst others. (ANI)