ISRO chief wants to inspire people to chase their dreams

ISRO chief wants to inspire people to chase their dreams

After the successful lunar mission and amidst back-to-back launches of Aditya-L1 solar mission and the Gaganyaan test vehicle, 59-year old Somanath has managed to find time to chronicle his life story. Being published by Kerala-based Lipi Publications, the book is slated to hit the shelves in November

Thiruvananthapuram: He may have helped the country conquer the moon, is making a similar attempt for the Sun and is busy preparing sending Indians to the space--all multi-crore rupee ventures, but ISRO chairman S Somanath's humble beginnings included an old bicycle and a modest lodging to cut transport and hostel expenses while in college. These little details, among many others, find a mention in his upcoming Malayalam autobiography, which he calls an attempt to inspire the talented, yet not so confident.

The autobiography in Malayalam titled "Nilavu Kudicha Simhangal," - loosely translated as - Lions that drank the moonlight - promises to be a tale of motivation. The book focuses on the power of hard work and perseverance in the face of difficulties. It was inspired by the massive success of Chandrayaan-3, ISRO's moon mission headed by Somanath, that catapulted India to an elite league of nations. Though it is the story of his eventful saga from an impoverished village youth, growth through the ISRO, elevation to the current coveted post and his journey till the Chandrayaan-3 launch, Somanath said he would like to call it as an inspirational story rather than an autobiography.

"It is actually the story of an ordinary village youth who doesn't even know whether to join engineering or BSc...about his dilemmas, right decisions he made in life, and the opportunities he received in a country like India," he narrated. "The book is not intended to teach my life story. Its only intention is to inspire people to chase their dreams while battling adversities in life," the ISRO Chairman added.

The veteran recalled his humble rural background, but said the country opened immense opportunities before him, and the autobiography is an attempt to highlight this. It was the historic success of the Chandrayaan-3 that persuaded him to come out with a book soon.

"The lunar mission has made such a great impact in the society. When we looked around, we could see how many people, especially children, were inspired by its success. They understood that India and Indians could do such great things," he explained. Lack of confidence is one of the major issues faced by many talented people, and the aim of his book is to showcase them that, he said. Pointing out his life as an example, Somanath said that despite conflicts and dilemmas, it is very important to make use of the right opportunities in life and choose the best career options. In the book, he describes in detail how he was forced to stay in a tiny lodge room in Kollam district as there was no money to pay hostel fees while studying at TKM Engineering College there decades ago.

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