ISRO has been chosen for the award of Gandhi Peace Prize for the year 2014, in addition to the Indira Gandhi award announced last year and host of other honours and awards for its successful Mangalyaan or Mars Orbiter Mission.
The MOM made India the first Asian country to enter the Martian sphere of influence – and at a very cost effective price of Rs. 450 crore($70 million), a mission attempted by China but failed.
It became the fourth space agency after National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) of the US, Russian Federal Space Agency (RFSA) and European Space Agency to have undertaken a mission to Mars.
ISRO plans to follow up with Chandrayaan-2 and missions to Venus andnear-Earth objects such as asteroids and comets.
The Gandhi Peace Prize for social, economic and political transformation through non-violence was instituted in the year 1995 and comprises an amount of Rs.1 crore and a citation, said a culture ministry statement.
Its previous recipients have included Nelson Mandela, Baba Amte, Bishop Desmond Tutu, the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, the Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan and Ramkrishna Mission.
ISRO’s Mars Mission team has recently won the US Space Pioneer Award in recognition of achieving the rare feat to send a mission to Mars in its very first attempt. The prestigious award given by the National Space Society would be presented to the ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Programme Team during the National Space Society’s 2015 International Space Development Conference to be held in Toronto from May 20-24, 2015.
Last November, ISRO was honoured with the Indira Gandhi Peace Prize 2014.