Chandrayaan-3's Lunar Touchdown; Here's Bollywood's Early Depiction of India's Moon Mission
The entire nation anticipates the historic moment of Chandrayaan-3's landing on the moon at 6:04 pm IST today, we find ourselves in a moment of cosmic reflection, not just about the remarkable feats of modern space exploration but also about a lesser-known gem from the past - 'Chand Par Chadayee' (A Trip to the Moon).
In 1967, two years before Neil Armstrong set foot on the lunar surface, filmmaker TP Sundaram ventured into the realm of science fiction with "Chand Par Chadayee." This Bollywood classic starred the legendary wrestler-turned-actor Dara Singh, alongside Anwar Hussain and Padma Khanna. The film boldly told the story of an Indian mission to the moon, a groundbreaking concept at the time.
The narrative follows astronaut Anand, portrayed by Dara Singh, and his trusty companion Bhagu (Bhagwan) as they embark on a perilous journey to Earth's enigmatic satellite. What awaited them on the lunar surface was a world beyond imagination, complete with monsters, aliens, and robots. This ambitious undertaking was especially audacious considering the limitations of special effects in the cinema of that era.
While the film may be remembered for its adventurous plot, it's the visionary predictions it made about future technology that truly sets it apart. "Chand Par Chadayee" foresaw several crucial 21st-century inventions, leaving us in awe of the writer's prescience.
One striking prediction was the depiction of Padma Khanna's character, Simi, engaging in a video call with her leader, reminiscent of today's Skype calls. The film also featured a box-like device for viewing, akin to Google Glass, a technology that wouldn't become reality until four decades later. Moreover, the film showcased devices that resemble modern-day printers, scanners, and digital cameras, along with glimpses of artificial intelligence and electronic mail, all of which came to fruition long after the film's release. It's worth noting that the visionary writer of this film was never credited on screen for these remarkable predictions.
Today, with Chandrayaan-3, we are about to witness yet another historic lunar landing. The mission, named for the renowned physicist Vikram Sarabhai, was successfully launched on July 14. It's encouraging to see how far India has come in the field of space exploration as the country waits with bated breath. The enthusiasm and pride displayed by Bollywood superstars on social media emphasize the significance of this mission, not just as a technological and scientific breakthrough but also as evidence of India's expanding sway in the cosmos.
- PTC PUNJABI