The Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), S Somanath, has decided to withdraw the publication of his forthcoming autobiography, titled ‘Nilavu Kudicha Simhangal’ (which roughly translates to ‘Lions that drank the Moonlight’). The decision comes in the wake of a controversy surrounding alleged critical comments made by Somanath about his predecessor, K Sivan. The autobiography had garnered attention due to these remarks, but Somanath clarified that his intent was not to criticize anyone.
Controversy and Withdrawal:
S Somanath’s autobiography generated controversy when it was revealed that it contained critical remarks about K Sivan, his predecessor as the head of ISRO. The comments led to a public outcry, prompting Somanath to take the unprecedented step of withdrawing the book’s publication. In his announcement, he emphasized that he did not wish to engage in any criticism or controversy.
S Somanath acknowledged that his book did contain references to the lack of clarity surrounding the announcement of the failure of the Chandrayaan-2 mission. Chandrayaan-2 was India’s second lunar exploration mission, which, in 2019, unfortunately failed to achieve a soft landing on the moon.
Inspiration and Overcoming Challenges:
Somanath clarified that his intention in writing the autobiography was not to criticize his predecessor or anyone else. Instead, he aimed to inspire individuals who aspire to achieve their goals and overcome challenges. He stressed that every person’s journey to reach a top position in an organization is marked by unique challenges, and his book was meant to highlight the importance of resilience and determination in the face of obstacles.
The Controversy’s Resolution:
While the controversy initially surrounded the critical comments made in the autobiography, S Somanath’s decision to withdraw the book signifies his commitment to avoiding any disputes or divisions. His goal is to foster a spirit of inspiration and learning from challenges, which is especially important in the field of space exploration, where overcoming difficulties and setbacks is inherent to the pursuit of scientific progress.