New Delhi, July 24 (IANS) President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday condoled the death of renowned Indian space scientist U.R. Rao, the architect of early satellites including Aryabhatta, Bhaskar, Apple, Rohini and multi-purpose Insat series.
In a message to Rao’s wife Yashoda, the President said: “I am sad to learn about the passing away of your husband, Prof. U.R. Rao. Please accept my heartfelt condolences and convey the same to the rest of your family members. I pray to the Almighty to give you and other members of the family strength and courage to bear this irreparable loss.”
The President said that Rao would be long remembered for his services to the nation in various capacities including chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Secretary in the Department of Space and Chancellor of the Indian Institute of Science and Technology at Thiruvananthapuram.
“For his exemplary services to the nation, Prof. Rao was honored with numerous prestigious awards including Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan. His demise is a great loss for our country and the scientific community,” the President said.
Prime Minister Modi also expressed his sadness over the death of Rao.
“Saddened by demise of renowned scientist, Professor UR Rao. His remarkable contribution to India’s space programme will never be forgotten,” he said.
Rao, 85, passed away at his residence on early Monay after prolonged illness and due to age-related health issues. Rao’s wife, who was also a scientist, son and daughter were at the bed side when he breathed his last.