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ISRO Chairman was diagnosed with cancer on Aditya-L1 launch day

Responding to questions about his family’s handling of the crisis, Somanath said the diagnosis came as a shock for them but cancer was no longer perceived as "incurable".
Last Updated 04 March 2024, 12:45 IST

Bengalluru: Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman S Somanath has revealed that he was diagnosed with cancer in his stomach on September 2, 2023 – the day the space agency launched India’s first space-based solar observatory, Aditya-L1.

In a video interview in Malayalam, with a private media group, Somanath said a scan in the morning revealed a cancerous growth in the stomach. Scans and tests conducted later, in Chennai, confirmed the growth which was subsequently removed through a surgical procedure.

“The surgery was done; I’ve completed the subsequent chemotherapy as well. I’m going through the processes now; there will be checkups and scans every year. What I can say now is that I’m healthy and fully engaged in my official duties,” Somanath said in the interview, released on Monday. The Isro chairman said he was hospitalised for only about four days.

Somanath told the interviewer that he had “some health issues” during the Chandrayaan-3 mission phase but there was no clarity on the nature of the ailment. “After the Aditya-L1 launch, I went to Chennai for a scan that confirmed the growth,” he said.

Responding to questions about his family’s handling of the crisis, Somanath said the diagnosis came as a shock for them but cancer was no longer perceived as "incurable".

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(Published 04 March 2024, 12:45 IST)

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