First Indian Astronaut turns 67 today

New Delhi: Rakesh Sharma, the first Indian to fly into space was born in Punjab 13 January 1949, Patiala, Punjab. It was almost 26 years ago that since Rakesh Sharma undertook the historical journey to space which is still remembered among people. 

On the occasion of his 67th birthday here are some interesting facts to know more about him other than being the first Indian Astronaut.

1) Rakesh Sharma, AC, Hero of the Soviet Union, is a former Indian Air Force pilot who flew aboard Soyuz T-11, launched April 3, 1984, as part of the Intercosmos programme.

2) He became the 128th person to travel space and India became the 14th country to send a man to space. 

3) The mission lasted nearly eight days, and Sharma and his crewmates landed in Kazakhstan on April 11.

4) While he was on the moon, Rakesh Sharma had a joint video conference with Indira Gandhi and officials in Moscow. When Indian PM asked him how India looked from the moon he replied "Saare Jahan Se acha".

5) He was dubbed with the Hero of Soviet Union and was also honored Ashoka Chakra in 1993.

6) During his stay at Russia, he started learning the Russian language in 1982 with his wife in order to improve communication between him and his Russian crew mates. 

7) He has now retired with his son Kapil Sharma settled as a Director I Me aur Main and his daughter Kritika as a media artist.

8) In 2014, 65 years old Rakesh Sharma wanted an another chance to travel space.