TIRUPATI: The name of Lord Venkateswara of the famous hill shrine at Tirumala, stencilled in microchips and affixed on NASA's Mars 2020 Rover, would fly to the Red Planet, former director of National Mission of Manuscripts and an ardent devotee V Venkata Ramana Reddy said here on Tuesday.
"I have submitted the sacred name of Lord Venkateswara and got the souvenir boarding pass in the name of the Lord from the official website of NASA," Reddy, also formerly professor of Oriental Research Institute in Sri Venkateswara University here, told PTI.
The Lord's name would be among 10 million names stencilled on microchips affixed on the Rover, the American space agency has said.
The submission of names at the NASA website for the "Send Your Name to Mars" campaign ended on Tuesday, Reddy said.
"I am a strong supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and an ardent devotee of Lord Venkateswara, and I am delighted to send the name of the ancient and world-famous Tirumala shrines presiding deity to Mars," he said.
NASA had invited the public to submit their names to fly to the red planet.
The mission is scheduled for launch in July 2020, with the spacecraft expected to touch down on Mars in February 2021.
The Rover would search for signs of past microbial life, characterise the planet's climate and geology, collect samples from Mars.