Modi to watch from ISRO's monitoring station as Mangalyaan enters Mars orbit

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Bangalore, Sept 23:  Prime Minister Narendra Modi will arrive in Bangalore this evening to witness an Indian spacecraft enter the Martian orbit early on Wednesday at the Indian Space Research Organisation or ISRO's mission control centre.

"As Modi is also in-charge of the space department, he has expressed keen interest to witness the historic event when the spacecraft enters the Martian orbit in its maiden attempt," a senior space official told IANS in Banglalore.

After an overnight stay at the Raj Bhavan, Mr Modi will drive to the space centre in the northern suburb to view India's Mangalyaan entering the Martian orbit from the sun's orbit.

"Though the orbit insertion exercise begins at 4.17 am, the prime minister will be at the mission control centre from 6.45 am to watch the crucial operation when the spacecraft main engine will be fired at 7.17 am to carry it through the region to enter the Martian orbit by 7.53 a.m.," the official said.

As command signals to the spacecraft and signals from it to the mission control centre take 12.5 minutes each way, confirmation about its insertion into the orbit will be known by 8.15 am.

ISRO chairman K. Radhakrishanan and senior scientists in-charge of the Mars Orbiter Mission will brief the prime minister about the operation.

A month after he took office in May, PM Modi visited the country's only spaceport at Sriharikota off the Bay of Bengal and about 80 km northeast of Chennai to witness the rocket launch of five foreign satellites by the space agency's commercial arm Antrix Corporation.

As Mr Modi visits Karnataka for the first time after becoming Prime Minister, his BJP is prepping for a grand welcome for him at the airport.

"Our party leaders and thousands of workers want to felicitate Modi on his maiden visit to the state after becoming PM and for bringing the party to power with majority," a BJP spokesman told IANS.

Governor Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and Mayor S. Shantakumari will receive Mr Modi at the military airport.

Mr Modi is expected to address the party's state unit leaders and about 10,000 workers at the airport.

Before flying back to New Delhi on Wednesday, Mr Modi will inaugurate a mega integrated food park at Koravahalli near Tumkur, about 70km from Bangalore, and address the gathering, which will include about 5,000 farmers and 10,000 BJP workers.


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