Sunday, July 11, 2021

Richard Branson Is Set To Take Off Into Space; But Did You Know He Has Indian Ancestry?

Founder of the Virgin Group and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ suborbital challenger Richard Branson is set to become the world’s first rocket company boss to launch into space on a Virgin Galactic rocket ship this Sunday, July 11. The British billionaire ceded the stage making prospects of commercial spaceline travel a reality superseding his rival Blue Orbit’s Bezos by nine days as the Amazon boss had initially announced a take off on July 20, coinciding with the anniversary of the Apollo moon landing with his brother, Mark and an unidentified winner of the auctioned seat who paid $28 million. 

As Branson is set for a historic record-breaker today to realize his “dream of a lifetime” onboard a dual-fuselage VSS Unity rocket plane nicknamed Eve [Branson’s late mother’s name], it is to note that the former may well be celebrated in India as he has invested in numerous projects and business ventures, citing his “Indian ancestry” at a meeting on December 12, 2019, during his visit to Mumbai. A couple of years ago, at what he described as a “courtesy meeting” Virgin Galactic’s founder Branson said that a part of his ancestral origins lies in Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, dating back to 1793. Revealing his ‘deep connection’ with India the commercial space line’s CEO said that he had included a picture of his great, great, great grandmother named Aria, who was Indian, on their Virgin Atlantic planes from London to Mumbai. 

“I knew that I had past generations living in India, but haven’t realized how strong our connections were,” Virgin Galactic’s founder Sir Richard Branson told the conference back then. “We also unveiled our newest flying icon, named Aria, after my great great great grandfather’s wife who was Indian,” he added.

Further, Branson continued, “So, it turned out that from 1793, we had four generations living here in Cuddalore and one of my great, great, great grandmothers was an Indian named Aria who was married to one of my great, great, great grandfathers," the then 69-year-old self-described adventurer and the London-based founder of the Virgin Group said. 

At the Mumbai conference, where he unveiled details of the £7.4 billion train project known as ‘Hyperloop’, Branson joked: “Every time I meet an Indian, I say we might be relatives.” Branson also emphasized investing in India as he revealed about a “big project” that would cut short the travel at around 700 mph between Mumbai and Pune to just 29 minutes. 

11/07/21 Zaini Majeed/Republic World

To Read the News in full at Source, Click the Headline


Post a Comment