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India successfully reaches Mars on maiden attempt

2014-09-24 11:26 Xinhua Web Editor: Mo Hong'e

India on Wednesday made history by becoming the first nation to successfully reach Mars on its first attempt.

"India has reached Mars. India is the only country to have succeeded in its first attempt," Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced from the headquarters of the state-owned space agency in the southern city of Bengaluru, telecast live on local TV channels.

"We have made it a habit of achieving the impossible. Humanity would not have progressed if we had not taken such leaps into the unknown and space is the biggest unknown out there," he added.

Hailing the scientists of Indian Space Research Organisation ( ISRO), Modi said, "You have inspired our future generation. Despite our many limitations, we aspired for the best. The success of our space program has been an example of our achievement."

"ISRO joins an elite group of only three other agencies worldwide to have successfully reached the Red Planet," he said.

India's Mars Orbiter Mission was launched in November last year.

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