Islamabad: Despite the chill in bilateral ties, Pakistan’s media on Thursday gave front-page coverage to India’s historic moon landing while a former minister even called it a “great moment” for India’s space agency, ISRO.
‘India becomes first nation to land near Moon’s south pole’ was the headline in most of the Pakistani newspapers and websites.
This was India’s second attempt to land a spacecraft on the Moon and comes less than a week after Russia’s Luna-25 mission failed.
The Geo News carried a story by its Web Desk about the landing, saying India’s Chandrayaan-3 has finally landed on the moon after a 40-day journey starting from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota and a history of space crashing.
The News International, the Dawn newspaper, the Business Recorder, Dunya News and others carried stories by various international news agencies.
Fawad Chaudhry, who was Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting in the Imran Khan-led government, called it a great moment for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
“What a great moment for #ISRO as #Chandrayaan3 lands on the Moon, I can see lots of young scientists celebrating this moment with Mr Somanath Chairman ISRO; only the Younger generation with dreams can change the world…good luck,” Chaudhry, a former senior member of Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
Before the landing, he said, “All eyes on #Chandryaan3 Moon landing 5:40 PM, great day for Indian Science Community and Space scientists, Congratulations to people of India on this great achievement.” Earlier he asked the Pakistani media to livestream Chandrayan’s moon landing.
The bilateral ties between India and Pakistan came under severe strain after India’s warplanes bombed a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp in Balakot in Pakistan in February 2019 in response to the Pulwama terror attack.
The relations further deteriorated after India on August 5, 2019, announced the withdrawal of special powers of Jammu and Kashmir and the bifurcation of the state into two union territories.