Haryana to Set Up Medical College in Memory of Kalpana Chawla

by VR Sreeraman on Jul 29 2007 3:10 PM

A medical college will be set up in memory of Indian American astronaut Kalpana Chawla in the state with the help of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the state government announced.

Announcing this here after inaugurating the state's first planetarium in her memory in this historic town, Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said that the medical college project was being worked out with the US space agency's help.

The planetarium, built at a cost of Rs.65 million, also houses a section on Kalpana and her space odysseys.

Kalpana was born in Karnal town where she also did her schooling. She studied for her aeronautical engineering degree at Chandigarh's Punjab Engineering College.

The Haryana girl died Feb 1, 2003 when NASA's space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during re-entry into the earth's atmosphere.

Kalpana had been in space twice - in 1997 and 2003. She was the first Indian woman to go to space.

Her father Banarsi Das Chawla was emotionally overcome as he read out a letter she had written to the director of the Nehru planetarium in Delhi just before going on her last space journey.