"Gaganaut" Emerges as Potential Name for Indian Astronauts

Gaganaut Emerges as Potential Name for Indian Astronauts

Speculation is swirling about the official designation for India's pioneering spacefarers. A tantalizing clue emerged during a recent presentation at the European Space Agency (ESA) meeting in Paris. ISRO chairman S. Somanath was in attendance, and an image was displayed that hinted at the term "Gaganaut."

This development follows Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement last month revealing the identities of the four astronauts selected for India's groundbreaking Gaganyaan Mission. The quartet – Prashanth Nair, Angad Prathap, Ajit Krishnan, and Shubhanshu Shukla – are immersed in the mission's demanding training program.

The ESA presentation slide ignited conjecture that "Gaganaut" could become the formal title for Indian astronauts. The word blends "Gagana," the Sanskrit word for "sky," with "naut," a familiar term for a voyager or explorer. This coinage has the flavor of space-faring designations used in other countries, like Russia's "cosmonaut."

Despite the suggestive presentation slide, the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has yet to issue an official confirmation. Press releases and statements about the Gaganyaan Mission have not explicitly used the term "Gaganaut."

Possible Origins and Implications​

If adopted, "Gaganaut" would add a distinctive cultural resonance to India's space ambitions. It would harmonize with India's focus on celebrating its rich heritage while embracing cutting-edge technological pursuits.

The potential adoption of "Gaganaut" underscores the excitement and national pride surrounding the Gaganyaan Mission, which represents a major milestone in India's space program.
Dont invent tuglak terms like gaganaut, vyomnaut... More looks like hysteria with half sanskrit half english than real need...
Saw some SM/Media pappus using vyomnaut term in the past...
Glad that they didn’t name BJnaut or M0dinaut, it’s a good name like Russian Cosmonaut.

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