On the eve of the launch of Mangalyaan, G Madhavan Nair, ISRO chairman K Radhakrishnan (First row, fifth from left) offered pujas at the Tirupati Venkateswara temple, about 100km from the launch pad, with miniature replicas of the rocket and the Mars orbiter spacecraft.
He was following a tradition started by his predecessor G Madhavan Nair. Scientists said they were enjoying a "very serious business" with enough lighter moments.
A scientist quipped if it was more than a coincidence that the Mars mission named Mangalyaan falls on a Mangalvaar (Tuesday, the day of Mars, called Mangala in Indian astronomy). "We know we have done a great job," chipped in another, "but let's not complain if there is a little divine intervention."
The launch was postponed from October 28 (a Monday) since one of the two radar-fitted ships that are to track the rocket from the South Pacific Ocean had not reached its destination due to bad weather.