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‘I was diagnosed on the day of Aditya L1 launch’: ISRO chief S Somnath shares experience of struggling with cancer

On the day of the launch of Aditya L1 mission, he got a scan done and was shocked to learn about a growth in his stomach. Further scans at a hospital in Chennai revealed he has a hereditary disease.

Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)’s chief S Somanath revealed in an interview with Tarmak Media House that he was diagnosed with stomach cancer on the lase of the Aditya L1 launch in September 2023. He has, however, recovered from the disease and resumed office after only four days of hospitalisation. The interview was published on 3rd March 2024.

Reportedly, on 2nd September 2023, the day when Aditya L1 was launched, S Somanath underwent a scan that revealed a growth in his stomach. Speaking to Tarmak Media House, he said, “There were some health issues during the Chandrayaan-3 mission launch. However, it was not clear to me at the time, I did not have a clear understanding of it.”

On the day of the launch of Aditya L1 mission, he got a scan done and was shocked to learn about a growth in his stomach. Further scans at a hospital in Chennai revealed he has a hereditary disease. Within days, it was confirmed that there were significant health challenges S Somanath had to face while fulfilling his professional responsibilities.

During the interview, he said, “It was a shock for the family. But now, I perceive cancer and its treatment as a solution.” He added, “I was uncertain about a complete cure at the time, I was undergoing the process.”

S Somanath underwent surgery followed by chemotherapy. His recovery was no less than a miracle as he had to spend only four days in the hospital and resumed office. On the fifth day of the surgery, he was at ISRO without any pain. He said, “I will be undergoing regular checkups and scans. But, now I am completely cured, and have resumed my duties.” S Somanath said it was a difficult time for him and his family.

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